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The Business Magazine July 2024
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Coventry former Ikea building to be transformed into cultural hub

Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities at Coventry City Council (centre) is pictured with ISG Regional Director Luke Arnold (left) and ISG Project Director Liam Davies (right) - picture contributed
Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities at Coventry City Council (centre) is pictured with ISG Regional Director Luke Arnold (left) and ISG Project Director Liam Davies (right) - picture contributed
Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities at Coventry City Council (centre) is pictured with ISG Regional Director Luke Arnold (left) and ISG Project Director Liam Davies (right) - picture contributed

Work to transform Coventry's former IKEA building into a cultural hub is poised to begin next month with work scheduled to be complete by autumn next year.

International construction group ISG is developing the project - the City Centre Cultural Gateway - which also promises to not only enrich the city's cultural landscape but also stimulate economic growth.

Projections suggest the scheme could create significant jobs and boost Coventry's position as a vibrant hub for arts, culture, and tourism. 

READ MORE: Green light for first phase of Coventry's City Centre South

"This is a bold and innovative vision to reimagine former retail space as a cultural hub for the City of Coventry," said Louise Daville, director of public sector strategy at ISG.

"The Cultural Gateway brings together complementary, yet distinct, partners within a key central location, providing a richly diverse experience for visitors, students and academics.

"The legacy of transformational projects is hugely impactful regionally and on a national scale.

"With schemes as complex and technically demanding as the Cultural Gateway, the use of the Crown Commercial Services (CCS) construction works framework has been instrumental in assisting early-stage collaboration and driving efficiencies and innovation across the construction process," she added.

"As we pass this key milestone, we have a highly motivated team focused on delivering an outstanding cultural destination for Coventry."

Cllr David Welsh, cabinet member for housing and communities at Coventry City Council, said: "The start of the construction process is a milestone to be celebrated and there will be even more to come as we see changes to the building that will soon become a cultural destination in our city.

"We're really looking forward to sharing more in the coming months and of course even more excited to see the work finished next year."

The work is a big undertaking. As well as transforming the external appearance, ISG will increase natural light by installing panoramic windows across the top two floors.

A major reconfiguration internally will be carried out, including structural alterations throughout, a mechanical and electrical services upgrade, and a full strip out of the 60,000 sq m accommodation.

This work also includes the removal of elevated travellators, lifts and associated distribution systems.

The nine-metre-high warehouse area will be turned into a specialised temperature-controlled art storage facility, served by a newly installed state-of-the-art oversized heavy load lift.


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Giles Gwinnett is a writer at The Business Magazine. He has been a journalist for more than 20 years and covered a vast array of topics at a range of media settings - in print and online. After his NCTJ newspaper training, he became a reporter in Hampshire before moving to a news agency in Gloucestershire. In recent years, he has been covering the financial markets along with company news for an investor-focused web portal. His many interests include politics, energy and the environment. He lives in Dorset.

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