Wirral set to get a new business hub by the summer

Work on a £900,000 project to rejuvenate the Pacific Road Arts Centre in Birkenhead and turn it into a new commercial hub is due to commence shortly.

In November 2013, Wirral Chamber of Commerce attained planning permission for the scheme, which will transform the Grade II-listed building. However, it had to raise the necessary funds to start the project. The Chamber also secured a long-term tenancy agreement from Wirral Council, which means that it will lease the building for a peppercorn rent.

A contractor to carry out the work is due to be appointed in January, so development should get underway in February. It is expected that the initiative will be completed in July.

The project aims to transform the disused theatre and art centre into offices and retail space, which will be tailored to the needs of businesses from the ‘knowledge economy’. However, KGB Music, a long-term tenant of Pacific Road, will also stay, so there will be a mix of tenants.

Partial funding for the scheme was secured thorough the Regional Development Fund, which contributed £345,000 of the £900,000 required.

Included in the deal is access to the old tramline inside the building for the Merseyside Tramway Preservation Society. The society has already done a lot of work restoring the tramway and is using the Taylor Street electricity substation to power two original trams.

The Pacific Road restoration project is one of several on the Wirral Peninsula. Local business groups, community organisations, Wirral architects, and the council are now working closely to improve the area by renovating other structures as well.

Posted by Adam Lloyd
January 21, 2015

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