A new chapter is set to open for an award-winning sustainable office complex in Durham City following an £11m deal.

Newcastle-based Adderstone Group has completed the sale of the Rivergreen Centre in Aykley Heads to Durham County Council.

A former RICS ‘UK Sustainable Building of the Year’, the centre, which has been the long-term HQ of Atom Bank, is considered to be one of the foremost sustainable office developments in the country.

It comprises 40,000 sq. ft. of Grade A office space, 170 car parking spaces and features strong environmental credentials, including a biofuel heating system and rainwater harvesting via a green sedum roof – all built around a cruciform shape, designed to maximise daylight and natural ventilation.

The deal paves the way for hundreds of council employees to relocate from the old county hall site to the Rivergreen Centre as part of the local authority’s plans for a more sustainable workplace environment, according to Ian Baggett, who founded Adderstone Group on the back of a geography dissertation that doubled up as a business plan, while he was a student at Durham University.

“This deal is important to the council because it enables the demolition of the old county hall, allowing work to commence on the Durham Innovation District at Aykley Heads,” he said.

The Durham Innovation District, which will be constructed on the 60-hectare site, will see the creation of high-quality office space and a state-of-the-art ecosystem to enable nascent businesses to thrive.

Upwards of 4,000 jobs could be created when the development eventually opens, delivering in excess of 400,000 sq. ft. of commercial floor space and an anticipated multi-million-pound boost to the local economy.

Ian Baggett added: “We feel privileged to have played a role in Atom Bank’s phenomenal success to date. This deal delivers a new civic home for the county council and paves the way for development works to start at the Durham Innovation District, which will hopefully allow more businesses like Adderstone Group to spin out of one of the best universities in the country.”