Orbit Developments
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Orbit Developments new £1m project attracts UK’s Leading ID card company Digital ID
Lucy Grundy
refurbished office and breakout space

Orbit Developments has successfully completed a £1million ‘defurb’ scheme in central Stockport, whilst securing a new long-term occupier for the space.

Highbankside has been completely stripped back to a shell and refurbished to provide a modern high specification energy efficient workspace. Orbit worked alongside Opus 4 for the design and refurbishment, whilst working closely with the incoming tenant to deliver their exact requirement.

Digital ID, the UK’s leading ID card company, who have continued to grow since their inception in 1995, have been a client of Orbit for 4 years, growing from a 3,000 sq. ft office to this superb 8,117 sq. ft space.

David Hinchcliffe, Finance Director at Digital ID said “From the moment that Orbit put forward their plans and ideas for the space, it was immediately clear that this was the product that we were looking for and would really excite our staff and clients.  Together with Opus 4 and Orbit, we all collaborated and worked as a team to deliver this modern refurbishment, right from the initial design to the outstanding end product.”

The newly refurbished and fitted space features exposed services with linear LED lighting offset by feature pendants, a large front of house feature area with a relaxed reception and coffee lounge space enabling team presentations, a high spec boardroom, various meeting rooms, large kitchen breakout and office space for around 80-100 desks.  A further new addition is the impressive glass lift within the main reception area, which is now bathed in natural light from a new full height window, with walls adorned with greenery. New energy saving M&E and a range of other factors have contributed to the space securing an ‘A’ EPC rating meaning the space is both greener and more efficient.

Daniel Blackburn, Commercial Director at Opus 4 said “This was an exciting opportunity to take Rhys and Orbit’s vision from an initial concept and 3D design delivering a ‘defurb style workspace’ to a ‘CAT A Plus’, to make a very tired space into a funky office space using collaborative spaces and biophilic design to give it that wow factor.  From the moment you walk through the main entrance it entices you, all the way into the office space which further wows you. We look forward to working with Orbit on further similar collaborations going forward to assist in securing more tenanted spaces.”

Highbankside is right on the doorstep of Stockport Marketplace and The Underbanks, which offer characterful amenities for staff.  Given that The Underbanks have been receiving a huge amount of positive press recently, from being dubbed The New Berlin, The Soho of the North and even ‘a funky family friendly alternative to Manchester’s Northern Quarter’ by The Sunday Times, it’s no wonder that it’s attracting businesses and investors.

Rhys Owen, Leasing Director at Orbit Developments said “The vision that we had for this space was of a building you would find in a New York or Northern Quarter back street, a quirky space off the beaten track but right in amongst things. The range of entertainment and amenities offered for employees throughout lunchtime or into the evening, now firmly competes with the offering of neighbouring Manchester, so the location of this building is perfect for socialising out of work.”

Orbit have had strong success recently in the area, letting around 20,000 sq. ft in No. 1 St Peters Sq. in the last couple of years.  Most of the lettings have been with tech businesses in significant deals.  The demand from these types of businesses have increased and they are all looking for something a bit different, and different is exactly what this project is.  Rhys says “Following the recent lettings at No. 1, we had the confidence in ourselves and in the Stockport market to invest substantial money to produce something different, but we were validated, as we secured a new long-term customer for this straightaway.

This is something different from Orbit but definitely the way that we are going to continue.  This has immediately ticked the boxes of an exciting thriving international businesses, so we are confident that this is the way forward.”

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