Construction of Wolverhampton’s eye-catching modern office development i9 has been completed – marking a major milestone in the creation of a thriving commercial quarter at the heart of the city’s award-winning Interchange.
i9 emerged following the success of the i10 complex on the opposite side of Railway Drive in the city centre, with both being delivered by the Council and leading property developer, Ion.
Contractor GRAHAM has constructed six floors of stunning Grade A office space at i9, including the potential for 5,600 sq ft of retail or leisure space.
It will house the second headquarters of the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) on the ground and fourth floors, with agreements close to being finalised with other big-name occupiers to take the remainder of the office space.
The i9 development is the first office building in the Black Country to be awarded WiredScore Gold certification in recognition of its digital connectivity and infrastructure.
It is also BREEAM Excellent rated to guarantee the long-term sustainability of the building and lower any potential impact on the surrounding environment.
Councillor Stephen Simkins, Cabinet Member for City Economy, said: “The completion of the i9 development – particularly during the pandemic – is another massive achievement for the Council and I am delighted to see our vision become a reality.
“This fantastic development will help us stimulate economic growth in the city, bringing hundreds of jobs and much-needed opportunities for local people in our recovery from the current Covid-19 crisis.
“As well as helping get Wolverhampton back on its feet, it is another step towards our aspirations of creating a commercial district in this area of the city centre.
“The Council is at the forefront of recovery for our citizens and the i9 development has attracted prominent occupiers and is helping give investors confidence in Wolverhampton.”
Ion Development Director, Rob Mason, added: “It is a delight to see the completion of i9, another milestone in the Interchange scheme’s acclaimed regeneration journey.
“It has been important to ION from the outset of this development to deliver a building that is sustainable, flexible and future proofed. To successfully marry this very forward-thinking approach to an external building design that fully reflects Wolverhampton’s commercial heritage is a true testament to the skills of the design and construction team.”
The Council and Ion, selected Glenn Howells Architects’ design for i9 as the winner from a strong field of ten UK leading architects and urban design practices in a national design competition.
The design has drawn influence from Wolverhampton’s family of red-brick Victorian buildings – providing a complementary, contemporary addition fit for 21st century working life.
GRAHAM Regional Director, Ronan Hughes, said: “We’re proud to have played such a key role in the delivery of this new commercial development for the city of Wolverhampton.
“Setting the standard for offices locally, the building is future fit for the new way of working with modern facilities and digital infrastructure complemented by a sustainable design that acknowledges its impact on the environment. We couldn’t be more delighted with the end result.”
The Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is also supporting the development of i9, which is ideally placed to benefit from HS2 – cutting journey times to London and elsewhere dramatically.
Tom Westley DL, Black Country LEP Chair, added: “The Black Country LEP are delighted to see completion of the City of Wolverhampton’s i9 development, a major milestone in the regeneration of Wolverhampton Interchange.
“Developments like i9 will bring jobs and investment opportunities to the Black Country, the timing is very helpful – it remains crucial that we are all focused on economic recovery in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.”