We’re now at that stage when those 1970s modernist office blocks need to start reinventing themselves. This is the case with the Pennine Centre between Tenter Street and Silver Street Head, Sheffield, built between 1973 and 1975, for the Midland Bank (now HSBC), and formerly known as Griffin House.
Opened to great fanfare in October 1976, the five blocks accommodated over a thousand workers, but changing market conditions eventually resulted in a reduction in staff numbers. When HSBC’s lease ended, it had already made plans to move to the smaller Grosvenor House, part of the Heart of the City II development, at Charter Square.
The tallest block at the Pennine Centre is 13-storeys (50 metres high).
The building, previously owned by US-based Kennedy Wilson, was sold for £18million to RBH Properties in the spring, which announced plans for flats and shops.
However, high conversion costs prompted the Portsmouth-based developer to rethink, the result being Pennine Five, the new name for the site.
The company plans to revamp all five blocks and let them to businesses, with potential to accommodate 2,500 people.
Within the development will be offices, co-working spaces, meeting rooms, cafes and restaurants, and by removing the ground and first floors of Block 4, will create a new public square. The site already has a four-storey underground car-park with 457 spaces.
Work on the five inter-connected blocks is scheduled to start in January 2020.