Royal Mail  Newtown, Birmingham

Royal Mail

The quarter of a million square foot Royal Mail project was the winner of the many Awards including the Bespoke Industrial/Warehouse Category of the 1998 Development of the Year Awards run by the Business and Industrial Agents Society. The judges were full of praise and commented: “the building has excellent tenant usability with a well designed yet simple architectural style. The investment appeal as a large bay warehouse was satisfied by the development’s overall good quality.” 

Less than half a mile from the City Centre, from the 1880’s to the 1920’s, this part of Aston - New Town progressively changed from residential to industrial.  The industrial uses ranged from metals to traditional Birmingham crafts and then motor industry, including Norton Cycles.  In 1995 PCPT prepared a masterplan for the 25 acres of land which recognises the need to modify the surviving Victorian residential street pattern.

The Royal Mail premises comprise a footprint of 25,000 sqm with offices, canteen, circulation and social areas totaling 5,000 sq m on two floors to the west and south elevation.  The east and north elevations are serviced areas which deal with the delivery and distribution of mail from and across the West Midlands.  The main hall is 138.6 x 108.6m and houses 8 integrated mail processors 37m x 5m and 10 sorting machines which can each deal with up to 30,000 letters per hour.

Royal Mail occupies 15 acres and necessitated the closure of four roads and relocation of services, the diversion of a road, a brook and a public sewer together with negotiations with a variety of landowners.  The process of closing roads and rationalization had to be completed at speed and involved a radical approach to urban regeneration.