Mersey architect to take on more staff as pipeline grows

Based in the Royal Albert Dock in Liverpool, Studio RBA is reporting a strong pipeline of work and says it will be looking to recruit more staff. Tony McDonough reports

Studio RBA, Mill Lane
Reciprocal Solutions and Shape Land & Property plans to build 15 affordable homes in Old Swan


Liverpool architecture practice Studio RBA says it is looking at taking on new staff following a “strong up-tick” in work.

With an end to the COVID-19 lockdown now in sight, the business said it is seeing clear signs of an increase in activity in the Liverpool development market. It has submitted its latest two developments for planners’ comments or approval and says it has another twelve on the drawing board.

“Someone’s turned the tap on,” said Studio RBA’s managing director, Kenny McNaughton. “It looks like the ‘bounce-back’ people have been predicting is real.”

Two schemes have been submitted to planners, both for a joint venture between Reciprocal Solutions and Shape Land & Property. The first is for 15 affordable homes on Mill Lane in the Old Swan district of Liverpool, next to the former Glasshouse pub. Pre-application discussions with Liverpool city council are now underway.

The second scheme is before the planning committee at Blackburn with Darwen Council for approval and comprises 20 affordable homes in Cabin End. Shape Engineering is the structural engineer on both schemes.

“We’re set for a busy spring, and from conversations with peers in the industry it looks like everyone else is too,” added Mr McNaughton. “The Budget didn’t seem to frighten the horses and was, in fact, very good for the housing sector.  Taking the Feeport award into consideration, Liverpool’s industrial property sector looks set to flourish as well.”

The firm recently recruited two new technical staff and says it is now planning further recruitment at its waterfront base in the Royal Albert Dock.

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