New conference centre at eco-venue iCon

A conference centre is set to open in April at the new iCon business facility in Daventry, Northamptonshire. The venue also has exhibition space and, following the soft opening in April, will officially open its meetings account with a large sustainability conference in June.

The iCon Environmental Innovation Centre will have 55 business units and has used green technologies and sustainable principles in its design and construction. The showcase auditorium has retractable tiered seating and can accommodate 300 delegates.

The building’s low carbon design features include a natural ventilation system and panels in the ceiling that can absorb or emit heat, depending on the temperature. The roof is made of an inflatable plastic membrane, similar to the material used on the Eden project in Cornwall.

The iCon has already won two design awards; a Green Apple Award for Architecture and the Built Environment and the Milton Keynes South Midlands Excellence Award.

Richard Hardwick, Operations Manager at the iCon tells Conference News: “We’ve been fortunate to be able to design a new conference venue from scratch, ensuring it has the facilities and versatility that modern events require. It’s been fascinating to watch the iCon take shape and we can’t wait to open for business.”

iCon Chairman, David Walker, adds: “The green agenda is changing the way the world does business. The iCon is a prestigious but affordable home for the businesses that are behind these innovations.”

Funding for the project came from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the East Midlands Development Agency and the West Northamptonshire Development Corporation.

The iCon team recently showed off the new venue at Ecobuild 2011.

One of the iCon’s most interesting spaces is the ‘street’ which runs through the centre of the building.

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Paul Colston


Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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