The first office building in Chester’s £100m Central Business Quarter has been launched in the city, marking a major economic boost to the region.
Muse Developments unveiled One City Place to an audience of property agents, council dignitaries and businesses this week as the pioneering force behind the transformation of Chester’s commercial offering.
The 70,000 sq ft Grade A office space next to Chester Railway Station is the first of seven offices to be built by 2028 as part of the new 500,000 sq ft business quarter, which will bring more than £96m to the city’s economy.
Phil Mayall, development director at Muse, said: “After 18 months of construction, we’re extremely proud to launch One City Place as an exciting new business destination in Chester.
“We’re confident that its location, top class office space and excellent transport connectivity with access to Chester Railway Station will attract businesses on a regional, national and international level. We have had good interest in the building and will be announcing the first lettings shortly.
“One City Place is the pioneering building in the Central Business Quarter and we look forward to continuing this development with a further six buildings. Our ultimate goal is to drive investment into the city, bring new jobs and promote Chester as a place to do business.”
Cheshire West and Chester Council has invested more than £1.5m into new public realm, designed by urbanism specialists Broadway Malyan, around the scheme including the renovation of Grade II listed rail sheds linked to Chester Railway Station. Residents, commuters and visitors can now walk out of the station and through the ‘Carriage Shed’ which features a new glass roof, ‘living’ wall, planting and paving, directly into the new business quarter.
Deputy Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, Councillor Louise Gittins said: “The launch marks an exciting and prosperous new chapter in Chester’s history as the Central Business Quarter is one of the largest business developments in the city in recent years. It forms a key part of our One City Plan which aims to drive business in the city and move it towards a brighter future.”
Attending the launch, The Lord Mayor of Chester Councillor Hugo Deynem praised the scheme, saying: “The launch of One City Place is a huge step forward for Chester and it represents a major statement to the business world to come and be part of an exciting new journey. With more than £700m of investment going on in the city, there really has never been a better time to be in Chester.”
Guy Butler, chairman of Chester Growth Partnership, said: “The completion and launch of City Place is significant for the future of Chester – particularly with regard to the offering of business space to employers by keeping accommodation current and attractive to the competitive employment market. It also further emphasizes the importance of the railway station and the infrastructure links which must be enhanced – this is an area of particular focus for the Chester Growth Partnership. We support and thank Muse for their commitment to the city and look forward to further phases of development.”
Over the next 15 years, it is estimated that the Central Business Quarter will create 3,500 jobs, provide 200 new homes and exciting retail opportunities, as well as a new hotel and leisure facilities.
Muse Developments is also working up plans to submit a reserved matters planning application for 100 canal side apartments as part of the wider scheme.
The One City Place development was part funded by the European Regional Development Fund and The North West Evergreen Fund.