Ownership of a brand-new office in the heart of Middlesbrough has been officially handed over to the Tees Valley Mayor and Tees Valley Combined Authority.
Chiefs got the keys to Six Centre Square last month after construction was completed on the landmark development.
The scheme and the wider Centre Square vision is a vital pillar for the future of Middlesbrough town centre.
Insurance giant AXA UK is set to take up more than half the space in the four-storey 40,000 sq ft building to host more than 450 Teesside staff.
The cutting-edge Grade A office space was built by developer Ashall Projects.
The TVCA has pumped £9.7million into Six Centre Square. A fit out for AXA will now take place over the coming weeks.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “Professional services companies looking to grow or break new ground are now choosing Teesside due to the fantastic facilities we’ve got to offer.
“Given all our success in bringing major Government departments to Darlington, with more than 2,000 civil service jobs available, our investment in Six Centre Square was simply a no-brainer. The vision for Centre Square is an impressive one – and across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool we’re helping to create lifechanging opportunities and paths to careers on our doorstep.
“Six Centre Square is yet another example that young people can stay close to home and go far – raising families here and contributing to our economy.”
Middlesbrough Council contributed £2million of its £21.9million Towns Fund allocation from Central Government to the project.
Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: “Centre Square is a great success story for Middlesbrough. It’s becoming a true hive of activity for ambitious firms who want the very best accommodation and locations.
“Six Centre Square is an excellent addition to our town centre and we’re supporting it to retain and attract more jobs for Middlesbrough.
“We’re making real progress in transforming our town centre so it has the right mix of leisure, learning, living and jobs.”
Six Centre Square Six is the latest phase in the wider development by Ashall Projects, which has already seen other high-profile companies relocate into the heart of the town.
Ashall Projects Managing Director Mark Ashall believes the remaining space in the new building – the 10,000 sq ft top floor and 4,000 sq ft on the ground floor – will soon be snapped up by businesses needing office accommodation to support their projects at Teesworks and the wider Tees Valley.
“We faced a lot of challenges with this development – the COVID restrictions, supply chain difficulties as well as inflation – and it’s great to deliver this fantastic new asset for Middlesbrough on time and on budget,” he said.
“We’re already planning the next phase of Centre Square and hopefully we’ll have announcements to make before too long.”