West Midlands Pension Fund has become the latest organisation to become a tenant of the city’s new i9 development.
It means the office space in the premium Grade A complex at the heart of the city’s commercial district and award-winning transport Interchange has been almost fully let within just seven weeks of construction of the building being completed.
West Midlands Pension Fund will occupy just under 20,000 sq ft on the second and third floors of the eye-catching development and it will be the base for 180 roles, with growth expected from emerging employment opportunities across customer, benefit, financial and investment services supporting the delivery of pension benefits to 340,000 members in the West Midlands.
The Fund has supported initiatives across the region to launch careers and create employment opportunities, reinforced by its Graduate recruitment and apprenticeship programme, now moving into its fifth successful year.
The new office space will continue to act as an accredited employer training centre for the region and provide a venue to collaborate with visitors, including financial institutions across the country.
Other i9 occupiers will be hundreds of Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities staff, including ministers and senior civil servants, on the ground and fourth floors, and LGPS Central Limited on the first floor.
City of Wolverhampton Council Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for City Economy, Councillor Stephen Simkins, said: “To secure the West Midlands Pension Fund as a tenant at i9 is a huge feather in the city’s cap, supporting the city’s priorities of creating opportunities and learning through its relight campaign.
“It also means all five floors of office space have been almost fully let within weeks of building construction being completed, which is a remarkable achievement.
“It absolutely endorses the Council’s brave and bold decision to invest and develop new Grade A commercial office space in Wolverhampton.
“i10 and i9 have raised the bar for the provision of top-grade office space in the city and the Council is now looking at ways to develop more so we can further expand our commercial district and create more opportunities for investors and jobs for our residents.”
Chair of the Pensions Committee, Councillor Milkinder Jaspal, added: “We are delighted to have selected the space in I9 to support delivery of our services in the West Midlands. We are actively supporting our pension fund members in retirement planning and key to our priorities is supporting individuals to plan for their retirement. i9 offers the perfect location. It is widely accessible through the excellent transport networks developed in the city and has advanced digital connectivity.
“The building, achieving BREEAM Excellent, was an important factor in our selection – we are committed to working with the landlord and neighbouring tenants to ensure we retain the same standards of sustainability that we are setting for our own property investments.”
Ion Development Director, Rob Mason, said: “We’re delighted to see i9 follow in the footsteps of i10’s success. It is testament to the determination of the partners involved, who have rightly placed connectivity and sustainability as being of paramount importance in a successful Grade A building.
“i9 and developments like it bring working communities into the city centre, galvanising the momentum of Wolverhampton’s regeneration story.”
i9 emerged following the success of the i10 complex on the opposite side of Railway Drive in the city centre, with both being delivered by the Council and leading property developer, Ion.
It is the next step in developing a thriving commercial quarter at the heart of Wolverhampton Interchange – bringing further investment and jobs to the city.
Contractor GRAHAM constructed the stunning Grade A office space at i9, which includes the potential for 5,600 sq ft of retail space.
It is the first office building in the Black Country to be awarded WiredScore Gold certification in recognition of its digital connectivity and infrastructure and is also BREEAM Excellent rated to guarantee the long-term sustainability of the building and lower any potential impact on the surrounding environment.
The Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) supported the development of i9, which is ideally placed to benefit from HS2 – cutting journey times to London and elsewhere dramatically.
Anyone interested in employment opportunities with the West Midlands Pension Fund should email [email protected]