Boho 5 was developed in partnership by the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and Middlesbrough Council both of which are partners in a joint venture covering the regeneration of Middlehaven and St Hilda’s areas, including the Boho Zone.
The concept of the Boho Zone was established in 2005. At that time it was conceived as a loose geography across a series of buildings and potential development sites in the oldest part of the town. Building on the success of Teesside University’s digital courses and the formation of DCB as a platform for creating the further growth of digital media and technology courses, a plan was formed to establish a building infrastructure that would eventually accommodate the full spectrum of start-up to established businesses.
The success of the early stages of the DCB development plus the demand for start-up space, prompted DCB to commission a feasibility study with xsite architecture (xsite), which subsequently led to the Stage D design for Boho 5.
Design: Located on a prominent brownfield site within the Boho Zone area, the building acts as a spoke connected to the ‘hub’ provided by Boho One. A business accommodation building, Boho 5 sits geographically close to and working in a complementary way with the existing buildings within Middlesbrough’s Boho Zone, providing a seamless offer to cluster companies and potential entrepreneurs.
It is a high quality, innovative building reflecting the aspirations of the digital sector and designed to foster increased collaboration between its occupiers. Specifically, it provides small, flexible incubation space for up to fifty start-up businesses, which will then grow and expand to occupy space in other publicly or privately owned buildings within the area.
The six -storey building is constructed from steel and concrete and has been carefully designed to minimise carbon footprint in the build and operational phases with photovoltaic panels on the roof contributing to its BREEAM Very Good rating.
The black profiled metal cladding with its finish changing from matte to gloss on alternate floors works particularly well. As a fairly low cost cladding material more commonly associated with industrial buildings, it has been elevated to something entirely suitable for use in an urban context due to careful consideration of colour, orientation and detail.
The expectation is that Boho 5 will lead to the creation of 37 jobs by the end of 2015 and 105 jobs by the end of 2017, whilst at the same time, supporting the economic growth and stability generated by the wider Boho Zone network.