Work begins to transform Steel House office block as furniture and equipment removed
Fifteen new workers were welcomed by Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen for the project to modernize the Steel House office building.
Steel House opened in 1978 as the former British Steel headquarters for the Redcar steel mill.
One of their last acts before the mothballing was the use by a task force that was set up after the closure of the SSI steelworks to assign job and training opportunities to laid-off workers.
The building is getting a new look with its 220,000 square feet of redundant office space that will become the base for the entire 4,500 acre Teesworks site.
Plans to remodel the Steel House and landscaping the surrounding land were announced by Mayor Houchen in February, and provide for the lower floors to provide services for Teesworks staff, including a crèche, café and gym, as well as additional office space in the Upstairs floors are added.
Expansion of the building has begun, removing more than 3,500 redundant furniture and appliances to create safe zones so surveyors and architects can examine the condition of the building before further refurbishments.
The first tenants should move into the renovated building in 18 to 24 months.
The new on-site staff were recruited through the Teesworks Skills Academy, which was established to help local people take advantage of the job opportunities at Teesworks by training them to acquire the skills they need and by connecting them with employers to who recruit.
Mayor Houchen said: “I have always said that we would try, wherever possible, to preserve some of the most iconic buildings on the site and this work will give the building a much needed upgrade.
“After its completion, it will express the trust we have in the location and, together with the new, ultra-modern gatehouse, will help inspire investors who want to settle here.”
Mary Lanigan, Chair of Redcar and Cleveland Council, said Teesworks is creating an environment that is aimed at attracting serious investment from across the UK and the world.
She said, “Steel House is an iconic building and I am sure that further improvements, once the plans are approved, will help us impress the investors we need.”