12 September 2023| | 4 min read
Work restarts on Pattern Shop redevelopment
Recently-appointed Robertson Construction has kick-started work on the iconic Pattern Shop redevelopment in the heart of Newcastle.
Work on the £8.7m office scheme stalled earlier this year after the collapse of the previous contractors Tolent. However, work has now resumed on the Forth Street site with the scheme projected to complete early 2024.
Joinery, mechanical and electrical works are now well underway and groundworks including drainage and building services installation will restart imminently, paving the way for surfacing works scheduled for later this year. The remaining external curtain walling sections will then be installed enabling the final finishes and commissioning before the Pattern Shop welcomes its first occupants in the new year.
With spectacular southern views of the Tyne Bridge, the Pattern Shop is situated directly adjacent to Central Station and other major transport links. The scheme will combine industry-leading telecommunications connectivity alongside cutting-edge sustainable technology, as well as low carbon, low energy infrastructure throughout the three-storey building.
Following the extensive remodelling and renovation of the circa 3,000 sq. m site, the hub will provide a large-scale exhibition and creative space for the city, as well as offering flexible SME workspace, or a single let, for up to 300 people.
Situated in the heart of Stephenson Quarter, the scheme marks the start of the next phase of development on this historic city centre site by Stephenson Works LLP, a joint venture between PfP igloo (PfP Capital and igloo Regeneration) and Newcastle City Council. Newcastle City Council owns and will retain the building.
Built circa 1880, the Pattern Shop was originally used by the world-famous locomotive designer Robert Stephenson, one of the greatest engineers of the Victorian era. Now reinvented for today’s innovators, this striking Grade II Listed building with its remarkable industrial legacy, will be the ideal base for businesses looking to make their mark on the city’s vibrant creative and digital sector.
Cllr Alex Hay, Newcastle City Council cabinet member for a Thriving City, said: “It’s brilliant to see works back in progress at the Pattern Shop and I’m excited for this key strategic development to get back on track.
“This is a significant element of the transformation of the Stephenson Quarter, and will present a host of new opportunities for people at the same time as breathing new life into the rich history of an important part of the centre of Newcastle.”
Pippa Heron, development manager at igloo, said: “We are delighted to see Robertson hit the ground running and continue the transformation of this forgotten site into a truly iconic building for the city. There are already clear signs that we are back on track, with the eye-catching mezzanine floor, for example, already visible. This will be a signature feature of the scheme and signals our intent to make the Pattern Shop a key anchor in the continued renaissance of this district.”
As part of its impressive sustainability credentials, the Pattern Shop will be BREEAM “Very Good”, with an EPC “B” rating. Its close proximity to the train station as well as cycle storage and showering facilities are also designed to encourage sustainable commuting by its future occupants.
Garry Hope, managing director, Robertson Construction North East, said: “The Pattern Shop will once again become a pivotal part of Newcastle’s history. Buildings like these have incredible stories to tell and we will be honouring the well-known history and legacy of the building as we continue the works to create a modern working environment.
“Where possible we are working with the previous supply chain and works are progressing well with a targeted completion of 2024. Upon completion, The Pattern Shop will provide a space for new innovators in an environment which prioritises sustainability, comfort and wellbeing, with beautiful views of Tyne Bridge.”
Patrick Matheson, Partner from Knight Frank, agents for the Pattern Shop, said: “The vast majority of occupiers are now focusing their property requirements on highly sustainable, inspiring office spaces. We are seeing occupiers using their offices as a strategic business tool to significantly enhance their staff’s experience, collaboration and wellbeing.
“As we move towards 2024, we expect this trend to continue and the Pattern Shop, with its incredible history, character and very strong environmental credentials, will be well placed to deliver a superb workspace in the very heart of Newcastle city centre.”
Office and workspace already thriving in the district includes Central Square, with its neighbouring hospitality businesses, including the Crowne Plaza hotel and Spa, Gin Bar, The Boiler Shop music and events venue, 5 Quarter Café & Bar and The Arches Beer Street MicroPub and Bottle Shop.