Wigan Civic Centre proposals for Capital & Centric target BREEAM “excellent” rating
Wigan Council has given architect Shedkm the green light to convert the authority’s brutalist former HQ into start-up space for new businesses.
Shedkm’s proposals have been worked up for developer Capital & Centric and will deliver desk space for around 300 people, as well as a coffee shop, a gym, a small cinema and a roof terrace.
Wigan Civic Centre was designed by the Percy Thomas Partnership and constructed in multiple phases, the first of which completed in the early 1970s. The five-storey, L-shaped building was vacated by the council in 2018.
Shedkm’s refurbishment will include the replacement of the pre-cast concrete structure’s current windows, and the insertion of additional fenestration. The roof terrace will feature pergolas and louvre screening.
The practice is targeting a BRREAM “excellent” rating for the project, which will include heating provided by air-source heat pumps.
Wigan Council planners approved the practice’s proposals using delegated powers. They said the project would have “significant economic benefits”, attracting businesses into the town centre as well as offering ancillary communal facilities that would benefit the wider community.
“The alterations proposed would improve and dramatically enhance the character and appearance of the building and its external realm,” they said.
Officers added that the proposals would have “minimal impact” on nearby heritage buildings, and would “preserve and enhance” the setting of the adjacent Wigan Town Centre Conservation Area. They said no public responses had been submitted in relation to the planning application.
Lead architect Claire Yates said the project would bring the Civic Centre back to life, “exposing its concrete features and re-using the former offices for contemporary workspaces, while improving and creating green spaces and accessibility”.
In addition to Shedkm, Capital & Centric’s project team includes structural engineer Civic Engineers, building services engineer Crookes Walker Consulting, and landscape architect Planit.