A MULTI-million pound project to build a town centre office complex is officially under way.

The site of the former Beaumont Street Car Park, opposite the Feethams leisure complex, is being transformed into a five-storey building providing accommodation for small and medium business in the borough.

The £8.5m offices are being jointly funded by Darlington Borough Council, the Tees Valley Combined Authority and the European Regional Development fund.

The Northern Echo:

The commercial development is also expected to include areas of open space for public use.

Building work will take more than one year to complete, with planners aiming for a complete build by spring 2020.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “This Grade-A office space will be a huge draw for professional services firms that are currently looking at Leeds or Newcastle for their base.

“In funding this development, we’re helping to create a quality workspace that is just a stone’s throw away from the East Coast Mainline, building on Darlington’s excellent transport links.

"It will signal to firms across the UK that the Tees Valley is open for business.”

The 3,900 square metre office space will target businesses in the digital and creative industries and professional services companies.

Darlington Borough Council cabinet member for economy and regeneration Councillor Chris McEwan said: “This is fantastic news for Darlington and allows businesses to take advantage of the great location and transport network links Darlington offers.

“Work starting on this development is another huge step forward in making sure Darlington is an attractive and vibrant location for both business and leisure for years to come.”

The council's business support team can provide specialist advice, information and guidance on initiatives available to businesses looking to establish themselves in Darlington. For more information, call 01325-406305.