The scheme includes restored workshops and new-build offices. Credit: AHMM

Partners unveil Founders Place brand

Set in Newcastle’s Stephenson Quarter, the £137m regeneration scheme has been named to honour its engineering heritage, as the team led by igloo Regeneration push onto the next phase.

The developer, part of Places for People, is working in partnership with Newcastle City Council and Thriving Investments. the fund management arm of Places for People founded in 2017 as PfP Capital.

The Founders Place brand covers close to 10 acres within the Stephenson Quarter, including the recently completed Pattern Shop and the plot for the proposed 100,000 sq ft grade A office block Pioneer.

Positioned to the south of and adjacent to Newcastle’s central railway station, Founders Place was originally the location of the workshops and site offices of Robert Stephenson & Company; the first company in the world to specifically design and build locomotive steam engines.

Pre-let partners are being sought for The Pioneer, a 10-storey design from Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, before construction can begin.

Main contractor Robertson Construction North East has now completed its work at the grade two-listed Pattern Shop, where a £9m restoration has seen the space developed into around 32,000 sq ft of workspace in an £8.7m project.

Future phases across Founders Place include Orchard Yard, the Railyards and Coppersmith Shop, which the partners said will combine to offer a mixed-use opportunity for residential, creative workshop hubs, a destination restaurant and retail businesses.

The over-arching plan is for around 160,000 sq ft of office space, 60,000 sq ft of which will be in heritage space, with around 80 zero-carbon homes delivered.

The Engine Hall will be the Pattern Shop’s centrepiece. Credit: Renderloft for NCC

Insiyah Khushnood, senior development manager at igloo, said: “Founders Place is one of the most inspirational settings imaginable and we’re looking forward to hearing responses to our shared vision from the market.

“The creative, pioneering founders from the area’s past and the heritage legacy of their work is an incredible starting point for any new scheme, and we felt it was important to retain the heart and soul that makes the area so special for today’s founders. This is a place designed for the future, where people will want to work, live and enjoy life for many years to come.

“It’s the strongest signal yet that Newcastle is proudly and successfully combining its rich heritage with cutting-edge work spaces designed for a talented and dynamic workforce. Anyone who has the privilege to work here will know they are part of something special that’s connected to entrepreneurs of the past but with eyes firmly fixed on the future.”

Pre-lets are sought for the 100,000 sq ft Pioneer. Credit: AHMM

Knight Frank is agent for the development. Partner Patrick Matheson said: “Occupiers are focusing their property requirements on highly sustainable, inspiring workspaces. As more staff return to shared offices, either full-time or in hybrid roles, we know employers want to offer superior spaces that will enhance their employees’ working experience and well-being.

“The collection of buildings that make up Founders Place have an enviable heritage and character that is evident across the whole development. It offers superb work options in the very heart of Newcastle city centre with the strongest of eco-credentials.”

Thriving Investments was founded in the fund management sector as PfP Capital in 2017 and encompasses three funds: a BTR fund, a mid-market rent fund and igloo Developments.

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