Croydon was dealt another massive blow today as Bank of America Merrill Lynch announced it is to close its data centre on Dingwall Road, moving its operation to offices at Canary Wharf, The City, and to Bromley early in 2013. The Bank of America site near East Croydon station employs around 1,000 staff.
The prospect of yet another emptying office block in central Croydon follows a similar number of jobs exiting the borough later this year when Nestle – the town’s biggest private sector employer – transfers its headquarters to Sussex. And the news comes less than a week after Allders called in the administrators, putting another 800 full- and part-time jobs at risk.
A spokeswoman for Bank of America Merrill Lynch told the website: “The data centre located in Croydon is scheduled to close in Q1 2013. Croydon was originally set up as a data centre facility and as part of a regular review of our technology and support infrastructure, it was decided to consolidate this site in order to reduce the overall number of data centres we use globally.
“The consolidation and closure of the data centre in Croydon will allow us to modernise and simplify our IT infrastructure to better meet the needs of our clients.”
The decision to re-deploy staff from one office to three other buildings spread across London, including Bromley, suggests another major business that may have grown disenchanted with post-riots Croydon’s environment and services.
The loss of so many more workers coming to central Croydon each day will further damage business for local pubs, cafes, sandwich bars and shops. Nor will an empty office block inspire developers and investors to sink money into high-risk projects in the area.
The BAML announcement coincided with work beginning on Renaissance, a 100,000 sq ft office scheme at 9-16 Dingwall Road. Developed by a group called Abstract, which will be offering rents from £22 per sq ft deliberately to undercut other prospective new builds.
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