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Leeds Office Scheme Invests in Measures for Post-Pandemic Resilience

21 October 2020

The modifications include unisex self-contained “superloos” and improved ventilation to provide occupants with 20 per cent more fresh air than conventional offices.

An office site in Leeds, already undergoing major renovation works, is making further modifications to provide a more hygiene-conscious environment in a post-COVID world.

The site is in Leeds city centre’s creative quarter and is undergoing a £2 million refurbishment by Regional REIT. It’s also undergoing a rebranding of The Coach Works at 21 The Calls, Leeds. 

However, with the onset of COVID mid-programme, the company took the decision to invest heavily in measures that will make the building more resilient for the new working environment.

The renovation programme is expected to complete by week commencing 7 December 2020.


"Apart from the isolation that comes from social distancing, home working does not provide the human connection and engagement that many creative communities thrive on."

–Ben Mitchell

Senior Asset Manager, London & Scottish Property Investment Management


Discreet Adaptations that are “Fundamental to the Welfare of Occupiers”


Formerly known as Chancellor Court, The Coach Works is made up of two buildings totalling 41,479 sq ft. It sits in the heart of a thriving part of Leeds now recognised as its creative district, which is surrounded by independent shops, bars and diverse food outlets.

The ongoing refurbishment is on track to deliver new high-specification space over four floors, bringing together exposed features and modern design with new raised-access floors, LED lighting, air conditioning and a striking new entrance/reception.

Ben Mitchell, Senior Asset Manager at London & Scottish Property Investment Management, the asset manager for Regional REIT, said:

“At the start of the pandemic many companies adopted a work-from-home mode. But the creative industries in particular quickly realised that the home environment was not be as productive as anticipated. Apart from the isolation that comes from social distancing, home working does not provide the human connection and engagement that many creative communities thrive on.

"As responsible developers we must instigate the changes necessary to make our creative workplaces as safe and protected as possible and, Whilst already excited about how the refurbishment was progressing, the pandemic led us to consider the more discreet adaptations that are fundamental to the welfare of occupiers.

“In close collaboration with our consultants, including KPP Architects, BNP Paribas Real Estate, TB&A and the main contractor JP Wild, we have quickly reacted with a number of design modifications that will provide valuable peace of mind.”


Installation of Unisex “Superloos” with Touchless Technology


One such modification is the installation of “Superloos” that are self-contained cubicles with a toilet, vanity unit and hand-drying facilities. Whilst the unisex washroom design for sole occupancy reduces the COVID-19 risk issues, the team has gone one step further with touchless taps, soap dispensers and flushing equipment.

Ventilation has also been adapted with improved fresh airflow and extraction, and fully renovated, openable windows, reversing a historic trend of sealed-in office spaces. The systems are of a twin-circuit type providing 100 per cent airflow change for both fresh air feed and on extraction. External fresh air is also pre-heated to maintain ambient temperatures. This provides occupants with 20 per cent more fresh air than conventional offices

The Coach Works is owned by Regional REIT and is part of their extensive UK property portfolio worth in excess of £700 million. Suites from 3,250 sq ft up to 10,000 sq ft are being marketed by Knight Frank and Cushman & Wakefield.

Picture: a photograph of the interior of The Coach Works, showing breakout areas 

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 21 October 2020


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