Work has started on the first phase of a multi-million pound development that will transform the heart of Telford.
The work at The International Centre, in St Quentin Gate, is the start of the new Southwater development, and it’s the first step towards a brand new convention quarter for the town.
The overall project is a joint initiative between the Southwater Event Group (owners of The International Centre) and Telford & Wrekin Council.
Southwater Event Group Chief Executive, Tom Gray, said the start of the ambitious development was a real milestone for the town. “We’re extremely excited to see work starting on site on the first stage of a development that will change the face of Telford.
“We’ve worked in partnership with the council, and with other organisations and businesses to bring this development to life, and we’re all looking forward to a dynamic future for the town as a whole.”
The initial work will create an additional entrance for The International Centre, which will allow the venue to host more events simultaneously and still manage traffic flow with ease.
Following the creation of the new entrance, which is expected to be completed by September, work is then set to begin on a second new access, more breakout space and a new event suite for up to 1500 delegates (almost 3000 sq m of extra event space). There will also be additional public areas at the venue itself, and plans have been submitted for a new hotel, bars and restaurants.
“We are creating additional entrances so that we can host more events all at the same time, and enable each event to have their own dedicated access and reception areas. This will increase the flexibility of our facilities, and create more opportunities for event organisers in our increasingly busy diary,” said Tom.
“Our ambition is to cement The International Centre’s position as one of the best events venues in the UK, but to do this, we need to see the development of the town’s infrastructure. The council’s masterplan for the new convention quarter will create a thriving night time economy with the International Centre at its heart, and this will help us to make Telford an even more attractive destination for people to visit.
“By investing in our facilities, we believe we can compete more effectively at a national and international level, and bring more business to the area which in turn will create new jobs and new investment opportunities.”
The International Centre already has 11,600 sq m of flexible event space, two on-site hotels and one just minutes away from the site, an in-house event production company, and in-house catering, and its central location makes it a popular choice with event organisers.
“Our plans will enhance the facilities we already have, and help us to bring even more events to Telford – we’re very confident that our redevelopment will attract a great deal of attention in the industry and firmly establish our place on the worldwide stage.”