Seal of Approval for Albert Wing

Ian Austin, The West Midlands Regional Minister, opened the Albert Wing, the second phase in the redevelopment of the Argent Centre, on Monday 15th June 2009.

Built by Midlands Industrial Association Ltd, the Albert Wing located in the Jewellery Quarter provides 10,387 sq ft of prestigious business accommodation that consists of 16 spaces including two retail units.

Gap funded by Advantage West Midlands to the sum of circa £600k (30% of the construction cost), a mixture of new start, sole traders and existing small and micro-businesses will occupy the building.

Ian Austin, The West Midlands Regional Minister, said: “The Argent Centre is an impressive development and I’m delighted to be asked to officially open the Albert Wing. This development will pump prime refurbishment into neighbouring derelict sites and gives opportunities to those in the creative industry.”

Clive Wilkinson, Chairman of Midlands Industrial Association Ltd, said: “We are delighted to welcome Ian Austin, The West Midlands Regional Minister, to open this state of the art business accommodation.

The Albert Wing has been designed and equipped to create a vibrant and lively working environment for many different users. By providing new and affordable workspaces on ‘low risk’ licence agreements, we have revitalised the area and encouraged employment through the growth of small businesses.”

Designed by Dr Hugh Byrd of Hugh Byrd Associates (now based in New Zealand) the Albert Wing is located at the top of Newhall Hill on Frederick Street, the Main Gateway into the Jewellery Quarter.

Midlands Industrial Association Ltd was founded in 1982 by a group of individuals who were interested in the regeneration of inner city Birmingham in partnership with Birmingham City Council.

The Association is a registered Friendly Society whose declared aims and objectives are to promote employment and fight dereliction through the encouragement of the small firms sector.

This is achieved by providing suitable workspace through the refurbishment of redundant buildings and the reclamation of derelict sites in inner city areas. The Association currently has five projects in management, jointly accountable for 250,000 sq ft of commercial and industrial floor space and accommodates over 200 small firms who in turn employ circa. 1200 jobs in the West Midlands.

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