Bruntwood receives planning approval for transformation of historic Grade II listed Liverpool building

    News, Liverpool
    Exchange Court exterior

    Bruntwood is set to reimagine its 19th Century Grade II listed building, Exchange Court, following planning approval for the redevelopment of the landmark Liverpool city centre workspace.  

    Located within the Castle Street Conservation Area, which forms part of Liverpool’s Commercial District, the property will include 12,500 sq ft of new and premium refurbished workspace and a purpose built hospitality venue across three floors. Following planning approval, renovation works will begin towards the end of April with completion due for autumn 2024. 

    Originally created as the headquarters for Liverpool and London Globe Insurance in 1856, Exchange Court was designed by Charles Robert Cockerell, who also commissioned the city’s Bank of England building.  

    The Italian-style building, which was influenced by the design of the Palazzo Corner in Venice, has most recently been home to the Royal Bank of Scotland, who occupied half the building until 2022. A Bruntwood owned asset since 2007, the plans will breathe new life into the renowned building.

    Externally, Exchange Court will retain its Grade II listed design to preserve its cultural importance, while the significant internal renovations will evolve this Liverpool icon for the modern day. Bruntwood will also utilise a circular economy approach throughout the transformation of the building using recycled furniture and materials. Certain features will remain untouched to save the buildings' historic value including high-quality stone carvings, decorative iron balconettes and an original marble fireplace.

    This transformation will form a key pillar as part of Bruntwood's plans to enhance Exchange Court’s community of high growth businesses. The building's refurbishment will also build on its existing network of inspirational workspace in Liverpool, which includes Grade II listed property, Queen Insurance Building. The city centre workspace will focus on creating the perfect blend of work, wellbeing and leisure to ensure customers, local residents and visitors all thrive.  

    The ground and first floor redesign will create nine new high quality office suites ranging from 966 sq ft to 2,500 sq ft of fitted-out workspace ready for immediate occupation. The refurbishment will enhance flexibility and foster deeper collaboration amongst start ups and large, established businesses allowing them to scale and thrive. In addition, the reimagined communal area between suites will also promote collaboration and offer a place for customers to socialise, relax and unwind. 

    Exchange Court’s workspace will be anchored by a new hospitality-style arrival experience that connects the dynamic main high street to the building’s calm and welcoming community. A new food and drink offering will also be included inside the ground floor’s former banking hall, which will feed off Liverpool's vibrant retail and cultural scene. Bruntwood is on the hunt for a sole hospitably partner to operate the space, which will service footfall from both Exchange Court and visitors to the city.  

    Customers will also benefit from a variety of amenities situated within the building's basement including new shower and changing room facilities and a bike storage hub. The space will also include a new suite designed to function for personal training, fitness classes and wellness activities. Bruntwood is currently exploring potential opportunities for an operator to occupy the suite.  

    Andrew Butterworth, commercial director at Bruntwood, said: “Having received planning approval, we are now one step closer to realising our vision for Exchange Court. Harnessing the building’s heritage and history has been a key focus in creating a fit for future workspace where people can come together and flourish. 

    “We’re dedicated to delivering inspirational, flexible workspaces for customers of all sizes, from SMEs to large businesses, that are focused on creating a perfect blend between work and wellbeing.

    “Understanding the value of collaborating through connected communities is crucial to keeping our cities open for business and leisure. We champion this spirit of togetherness and are excited to see Exchange Court contribute to Liverpool’s thriving ecosystem.” 

    The Victorian and Edwardian era building boasts a wealth of period details and will be sympathetically redeveloped by the project team, which includes Cubic Works, Stephen Levrant and Deloitte.  

    Following planning approval for the transformation of the building, Bruntwood is exploring options to deliver a workspace for a variety of occupiers.

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