Bowmer + Kirkland secures net-zero office scheme in Manchester

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net-zero office scheme, 4 Angel Square,

Bowmer + Kirkland has been chosen as the main contractor for 4 Angel Square, the first speculative net-zero office scheme delivered at NOMA in Manchester

Development and asset manager MEPC has appointed Bowmer + Kirkland to deliver the net-zero office scheme at 4 Angel Square.

MEPC wants to set new benchmarks for sustainable commercial property development with 4 Angel Square and will be working closely with Bowmer + Kirkland to reduce carbon emissions during the construction process.

The construction contract has been signed and physical works will start on-site in the next few weeks.

The 200,000 sq ft net-zero office scheme will be an operational zero carbon building and is recognised as a LETI Pioneer project.

On top of securing an EPC A rating for 4 Angel Square, MEPC is also aiming for an ‘Outstanding’ BREEAM rating, with a minimum rating of Excellent guaranteed.

Creating sustainable workplaces

Paul Pavia, head of development at MEPC, said: “Commercial real estate was already beginning to see genuinely incorporating sustainability into the design and operation of buildings as being crucial to de-risking and future-proofing assets before Covid-19 struck.

“With widespread public and business support for a true ‘green recovery’ after the pandemic is over, we only expect occupier and investor demand for high quality, sustainable workspace to grow further, which is why we have committed to making 4 Angel Square operationally net-zero carbon and raising the standard for sustainable office development.”

Federated Hermes, which recently acquired MEPC, is the investment manager of the NOMA development and manages the 20-acre neighbourhood on behalf of an institutional investor.

Stephen Bradley, director of investment management at Federated Hermes, said: “We are confident in the Manchester market, which is why are continuing to develop 4 Angel Square speculatively, and believe Manchester stands to benefit from changes in occupier demands post-coronavirus.

“While work patterns will undoubtedly change, there will always be demand for well located, high quality, highly sustainable workspace.”

Over 2,000 people will be able to work at 4 Angel Square once the building is completed and over 500 people will work on the development over the project’s lifecycle.

Specific employment opportunities will be created for local workers as well as the homeless, and apprenticeships and work placements available for young people.

New benchmarks for sustainability

Paul Sykes, North West regional commercial director at Bowmer + Kirkland, commented: “4 Angel Square will be a landmark office development, setting new benchmarks for sustainability and creating new high-quality workspace that will support Manchester’s recovery.

“We look forward to working closely with MEPC during the construction phase to reduce carbon emissions and creating employment opportunities for local young and homeless people.”

MEPC and Federated Hermes will look to offset embodied and operational carbon at 4 Angel Square by investing in energy efficient and renewable projects across NOMA.

Sharon Brown, director of real estate risk and environmental impact at Federated Hermes, added: “The climate crisis requires an urgent and unified response. As responsible investors, Federated Hermes fully embraces the absolute need to support the development of sustainable buildings which not only deliver against net-zero objectives but also create healthy and more attractive spaces for our occupiers of the future.

“At the heart of our approach is our commitment to creating the ‘meaningful city’ – or places that people want to live and work in, and which foster a sense of belonging among inhabitants.

“We see the development of 4 Angel Square as a key development in delivering this approach in this key area of Manchester.”

4 Angel Square plans

Designed by Manchester-based architect SimpsonHaugh, 4 Angel Square will sit on the corner of Corporation Street and Miller Street and form a key part of the emerging business district within the NOMA neighbourhood.

The 11-storey net-zero office scheme features a hotel-style entrance lobby and reception area and a 2,500 sq ft external 10th floor roof terrace.

On the ground floor, 7,000 sq ft of retail space will be provided and split over two units, together with a separate ground-floor office suite perfect for a start-up or small business.

The ground-floor retail space will help activate the new public square that is planned for next to 4 Angel Square which will connect to the existing public realm surrounding One Angel Square.

The public square will also connect 4 Angel Square to 2 & 3 Angel Square, which will collectively deliver 400,000 sq ft of Grade A new-build office space once built.

The colonnade and coloured façade of 4 Angel Square will help connect the building to the listed estate at NOMA.

NOMA is also adapting the fit out of Dantzic, another refurbished historic building where 45,000 sq ft of contemporary workspace is available, to be more flexible and appealing to smaller occupiers post-pandemic.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, commented: “NOMA is playing a crucial role in revitalising a key part of Manchester city centre and today’s announcement is welcome news that will create jobs and drive investment into the city.

“Cities will need to move quickly to mitigate the economic impact of Covid-19 and it’s major projects such as this that help drive vital growth – and signals a city that remains attractive for development.”

The net-zero office development is expected to be completed in early 2023.

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