Cardiff City Council planning committee has resolved to grant planning consent to developer Stoford’s plans for a prestigious 220,000 sq ft headquarter building for motor insurance business, Admiral Group. The building will be built on the site of the former David Street car park, a designated development zone, on Bridge Street, close to St David’s shopping centre. Admiral Group now employs 4,100 people across South Wales, 2,000 of whom are in Cardiff. The new headquarters will allow the business to increase the number of people it employs in the capital to potentially 3,000 in one single building. Tony Nash, director of Stoford, said, “We have been working alongside Admiral Group for over a year to design a building which will not only deliver what Admiral requires as a hugely successful business but will also give the city a building to be justly proud of. We are delighted that the plans have been granted consent and very much look forward to getting started on site.”
Henry Engelhardt, Admiral Group CEO, said, “This is great news and very exciting for everyone who works for Admiral Group, and for the city of Cardiff. This will be the headquarters of a company already trading in France, Italy, Spain and the USA. “This new building will allow us to continue to grow as a company and truly cements our commitment to the city. We will now work closely with our staff to ensure the new building provides them with a happy, comfortable and stimulating environment.” Designed by leading architects, Glenn Howells Architects and endorsed by the Design Commission for Wales, the building which will have very low CO2 emissions, will meet the BREEAM ‘excellent’ standard of environmental sustainability and energy efficiency. It will set the benchmark for sustainable building in the future. In design terms, the twelve storey building will feature a pale stone clad finish and large expanses of glass to allow as much natural daylight as possible onto every floor, while, underneath there will be 120 car parking spaces. As well as super efficient workspace, there will be relaxation areas not only inside the building but also linking into the public space outside. Here a tall, colonnaded walkway running down the west side of the building will feature public cafes and restaurants complementing the Eastside dining area of St David’s. The external areas will be landscaped to offer local people places to sit and relax during lunch breaks, or on shopping trips in the neighbouring shopping centre. It is anticipated that, after a period of preparatory work on site, construction will start in December with completion due in early 2014. The building will bring more than £58 million investment to Cardiff city centre.