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GPA’s Birmingham government hub receives Inclusive Environment Recognition from CIC

Posted: 12th September 2023

The Government Property Agency (the GPA) has achieved ‘Inclusive Environments Recognition Certification’ at project level from CIC for its Government Hub in Birmingham.

The Stephenson Street Hub has been recognised for its accessible and inclusive environments, providing supportive work spaces and facilities to meet the needs of the diverse workforce. The CIC achievement confirms the workplace design goes beyond minimum legislative standards to create truly inclusive and accessible spaces where everyone feels welcome and accepted.

The Birmingham Hub was refurbished from 1950’s disused retail space. Despite the constraints of the building, the GPA has created modern, digitally-connected and inclusive workspaces to support 1,700 civil servants from 20 government bodies.

The Inclusive Environments Recognition scheme focuses on six essential principles:

  1. Appointment of an Inclusive Environmental Champion at Project Level
  2. Evidence that your Inclusive Design Strategy has been incorporated within the project brief and project budget
  3. An example of how the project procurement process has addressed inclusive design
  4. Evidence of the use of Access and Inclusive Design expertise and of consultation with diverse users
  5. Evidence of monitoring and appraisal of completed projects to assess outcomes and successes in creating accessible and inclusive environments
  6. List of any constraints that have prevented implementation of your Inclusive Design Strategy for example physical constraints of an existing building

This project-level recognition follows the GPA’s organisational-level achievement in March 2022.

Sam Carey-Smith, Head of Workplace Design at the GPA, said:

As the delivery body responsible for the Government’s office portfolio, the work we do has a direct impact on the UK’s civil servants. We are at the forefront of inclusive and flexible design. And this recognition from CIC confirms we are crafting great places to work where everyone can access the facilities, feel safe and be productive and supported while at work.

Steven Boyd, Chief Executive Officer at the GPA and Inclusive Environmental Champion, said:

Inclusive design is simply good design. Creating people-centred environments are at the heart of what we do. And driving forward this agenda across the Government is leading the change we are seeing across the UK - where everyone we support has the space to be themselves, and to be productive, while at work.

Graham Watts, Chief Executive at CIC said of this project certifications;

CIC is delighted to be able to recognise the commitment the Government Property Agency has towards creating inclusive and accessible environments for its building users at the Hub in Birmingham. The GPA overcame the challenges of retrofitting an existing building to make it inclusive and flexible to suit the needs of multiple tenants, going beyond the basic requirements. We look forward to seeing more of your projects as they progress.

For further information on our Inclusive Environments Recognition Certification scheme please click here.