BIRMINGHAM CITY COUNCIL, 10 Woodcock Street, Birmingham
The City Council is rightly very proud of this flagship building which allowed them to rationalise their property portfolio and cut costs. The strong BREEAM and EPC ratings endorse the credentials of this high quality multifunction office.
10 Woodcock Street represents the successful culmination of Birmingham City Council's five year journey to rationalise and restructure its entire back office portfolio under its 'Working for the Future' programme. This project sought to transform the way the corporation functions in relation to these challenging economic times and advancing technological conditions. The Council's achievement of reducing their occupied buildings from 78 to eight is nothing less than astonishing and they should rightly be proud of the success of their policy.
Not only did the team have to rise to the challenge of relocating nearly 3,000 staff to this site by Aston Science Park, they also had to ensure that the cultural shock of moving from ageing, expensive to maintain offices into a purpose built modern building, was handled sympathetically. The overall change process has been a socio-economic success: The council has already achieved significant improvements in staff performance and wellbeing as well as notable cost savings.
The creative design has provided a vibrant, open plan layout which houses 2,200 fixed stations and touch down spaces. This encourages a non-territorial approach in both staff culture and operations. The internal street has been crafted masterfully to open up the building to staff and local residents alike. Walking around it is apparent that the building goes so much further than the basic intention of providing a place of work; the various activities that are underway mean the place is buzzing with life.
For understandable noise and privacy reasons, the working areas have been separated from the internal street but in a way that does not create any barriers - so as to maintain the excellent circulation routes.
Sustainability was also high on the Council's agenda: The building achieved the BREEAM 'Excellent' rating and a strong EPC rating. There is a Combined Heating and Power link and rainwater harvesting whilst the council has found that the brown roofs provide an ideal habitat for local wildlife including the Black Redstart.
Truly a flagship building in every respect 10 Woodcock Street will have a positive impact on the workforce, general public and local residents.