Reading: Major roofing manufacturer moves to Thames Tower

Reading’s Thames Tower has a new tenant – BMI, which is expanding from London to Reading in the hope of attracting new talent and business.

BMI, the largest manufacturer of flat and pitched roofing and waterproofing solutions throughout Europe, has taken the whole of the 13th floor (14,000 sq ft) with a 10-year lease at the 14-storey office building. The deal leaves the building almost fully let, with just two floors remaining.

Since its redevelopment, a number of high-profile tenants have moved into the building, which sits on the town’s pedestrianised piazza, directly opposite the newly rebuilt, Elizabeth Line-connected, Reading station.

These include Ericsson, which moved its UK headquarters from Guildford to Reading through letting around 37,000 sq ft and covering the whole of the 8th, 9th and 14th floors. Earlier in 2018, shared workspace provider Fora took 27,600 sq ft on the ground, 1st and 2nd floors. Other occupiers include HSBC, MBNL, Pret a Manger and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

The building was sold to Spelthorne Council in August 2018 by developers Landid and Brockton Capital, as part of a portfolio of three Western Corridor office assets, with Landid becoming the building’s asset manager.

James Silver, Landid managing director, said: “This again proves Reading’s new office offer is increasingly attracting the big players. Thames Tower is a prime example of how offices, in transport hubs, like Reading, are proving to be a new and refreshing offer for UK and global business. We look forward to welcoming BMI to Thames Tower, a thriving building which is having a positive effect on the town and the local economy.”

Thames Tower’s location in Reading is a major draw to occupiers and offers excellent access to rail and road connections throughout the UK. Currently just 24 minutes from London Paddington station, Reading will enjoy even closer connections and reduced journey times when the Elizabeth Line opens in 2019. This will include direct connections to Heathrow Airport and Central London stations, including Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road, widening the net for the potential workforce.

The building has been awarded a WiredScore rating of Gold, making it the first office building in Reading to achieve a certification through the global connectivity rating scheme. Both the communal rooftop terrace and reception area have been designed as collaborative working spaces, allowing occupiers to meet, exchange ideas, and work in a buzzing and creative environment.

The roof terrace also doubles up as an events space, providing an amenity that is proving to be a real draw to Thames Valley businesses. To meet the needs of the ever increasing number of employees choosing to cycle, run or walk to work, Thames Tower also has over 100 cycle spaces as well as shower and changing facilities.

The tower, designed by dn-a architects, saw the original 10-storey 1970s building stripped back to its frame, floor plates were extended and four floors added – creating an additional 62,000 sq ft of space.

BNP Paribas acted for BMI, and Parkinson Holt and Cushman and Wakefield acted for Landid.

In addition to Thames Tower, the Spelthorne portfolio also includes The Charter Building, Uxbridge and The Porter Building, Slough, the UK’s first WELL-certified office building.