The consortium of developers spearheading the Freeman’s Reach project in Durham City has officially handed over Phase One of the development to its new tenants.
National Savings and Investments will move its operations and 427-strong workforce into the new building this summer, from its current base in Milburngate House on the opposite bank of the River Wear.
Construction of the 42,000sqft building, set across four floors, has been completed on schedule by lead contractor Carillion, which has carried out the new build with a supply chain primarily made up of local contractors.
Funded by Legal & General, Freeman’s Reach is being developed by a consortium led by Carillion, Arlington Real Estate and Richardsons Capital LLP and a 300-strong workforce, predominantly made up of North East-based contractors and professional service providers.
Workmen are currently on Phase Two of the development – the construction of a new office for Her Majesty’s Passport Office, which is scheduled for completion in 2016.
As well as new offices, the multi-million pound development will offer improved visitor amenities, daytime and evening café and restaurant facilities, as well as landscaping encompassing a new tree-lined Riverside Walk.
Helen Hawkley, assistant director of commercial assurance at National Savings and Investments, said: “Completing the handover marks the renewal of National Savings and Investments association with Durham.
“The design and open plan layout of Freeman’s Reach will provide our staff with a modern and collaborative working environment and we are really looking forward to moving in.”
Allan Cook, managing director of Arlington Real Estate, said: “Handing over phase one Freeman’s Reach is a major milestone in realising our vision for the regeneration of Durham’s Northern Quarter.
“National Savings and Investments is a recognised occupier so we are very proud that they have chosen Freeman’s Reach as their new home.”
Neil McMillan, director of Carillion Developments, said: “Freeman’s Reach is an exemplar development and we are very proud of this first, very important, phase of a wider programme of regeneration on Durham’s Riverside.”