Just 20 months on from when spades first hit the ground at 82 West India Dock Road, Rockwell’s project to build the UK’s tallest Premier Inn hotel, alongside a restaurant, café, pocket park and 68 new residential properties, has celebrated another key milestone.
Despite initial setbacks caused by the coronavirus pandemic, construction of the £151m development has continued at pace and on schedule, operating responsibly in line with the UK Government’s guidance on social distancing.
Last week, Rockwell celebrated the official topping out of the 30-storey mixed-use development. Present at the ceremony were representatives from the entire project team including partners, Whitbread; architects, Simpson Haugh; the contractor, John Sisk & Son alongside Aviva Investors and LendInvest; in addition to representatives from the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.
The creation of new jobs for local residents and the establishment of a legacy in Tower Hamlets has been fundamental throughout, and Rockwell was honoured to host graduates of its Hospitality Skills Programme – set up in the early stages of the development in partnership with the London Training Centre – at the ceremony.
Reflecting on the project, Rockwell Founder Donal Mulryan, said:
“This is a pivotal moment for the development and for Rockwell. I am immensely proud of the entire project team who have come together to deliver this outstanding development on time despite difficulties faced through multiple lockdowns.
As we near completion, our Hospitality Skills Programme will also enable local residents to gain the necessary skills and qualifications required to provide them with the best possible chance of securing employment through opportunities being created at Westferry. Delivering significant employment opportunities is a vital part of the positive legacy the development will leave on the area, especially as we move into post-pandemic economic recovery.”
Upon completion, the development will not only rejuvenate the local economy, but also – through the provision of affordable housing and the creation of fresh jobs for local people in the new hotel, restaurant, café and gym facilities – set a powerful precedent of truly positive and socially responsible property development which benefits locations for generations to come.