Arco headquarters could move to Fruit Market if building is sold to Hull City Council
Pictured, from left, Thomas Martin chairman of ARCO and Steve Radcliffe managing director of Clugston construction outside the current distribution centre (Image: Jerome Ellerby)
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 29 Jun 2018
A major property deal could see one of Hull's best-known companies move its headquarters into the city's Fruit Market.
Around 600 staff are currently based at safety equipment and supplies firm Arco's HQ in Waverley Street overlooking Castle Street.
But they could soon be on the move to the Fruit Market as part of a proposed deal with the city council.
The company has confirmed it is looking at the potential relocation as one of a number of options ahead of work starting on the long-awaited £400m Castle Street upgrade project.
In a statement, Arco said: "We can confirm that we are working with Hull City Council regarding the A63 Castle Street improvement scheme and the potential impact on our offices on Waverley Street.
CONGESTED: Castle Street is Hull's most congested road
"These discussions are ongoing and we are actively considering a number of options, including the Fruit Market site.
"Any final decision will be focused on minimising the impact and potential disruption to our business and our people, and on securing the best possible outcome for Arco’s long-term future in Hull.
"We will be able to provide more information in respect of this in due course."
City council deputy leader Councillor Daren Hale said: "I can confirm that the council is working in partnership with Arco and Highways England regarding the A63 improvement scheme and the potential impact on Arco’s offices at Waverley Street.”
Arco employs around 800 people in Hull
The council owns a currently vacant development site between Blackfriargate and the C4Di complex in the Fruit Market.
Part of the site is currently being used as a pay-and-display car park.
It was previously touted as a possible location for Channel 4 as part of the broadcaster's plans to open three regional centres as part of a re-location from London. However, the city council recently failed to make a shortlist of towns and cities being considered by Channel 4.
Talks between the council, Arco and Highways England have been taking place behind closed doors for several months.
It's understood cabinet approval for the council to buy the Arco site was given this week subject to final terms being agreed by all parties in another behind-closed-doors session.
The proposed Castle Street footbridge
One option under consideration is for Highways England to establish its main works compound at the Waverley Street site before construction starts on the road scheme in March 2020.
As well as its Waverley Street HQ, Arco operates a national distribution centre at Priory Park in west Hull, where a second £25m facility is currently being built.
Moving its HQ to the Fruit Market would mean a huge boost for the on-going regeneration scheme in the area, which is being jointly spearheaded by the council and developers Wykeland and Beal Homes.
Highways England is expected to submit a development consent order (DCO) for the Castle Street scheme in September.
The DCO will set out detailed plans for the proposed scheme, which includes lowering a stretch of the main A63 east-west route at the location of the current Mytongate junction and building a new link road above connecting Ferensway with Commercial Road.
A new £11m pedestrian footbridge between Princes Quay and the Marina will also be constructed in the early phase of the project with work scheduled to start on that in October of this year.