The scheme will form part of HGI’s £700m Central London Office Fund I, the fund manager has been granted consent to develop 81,000 sq ft of prime office space, alongside 3 shops and 6 apartments on Great Marlborough Street,W1.
Nick Deacon, fund manager for the Central London Office Fund at Henderson, expressed HGI’s confidence that the West End scheme will attract high calibre occupiers, when the Grade A office space is available to let in 2014.
He commented that “Soho remains a highly desirable location and a market we are particularly positive about.”
The scheme will comprise the construction of two new buildings on Great Marlborough Street and the refurbishment of two existing buildings fronting onto Poland Street, W1.
HGI chose Eric Parry Architects to design the new Soho buildings, which will be clad using cast glass, black and white vitreous enamel and dark grey granite stone panels. The consented proposals include a new public courtyard to be landscaped with mature trees and inclusion of Public art within the scheme.
Amongst Parry Architects’ previous projects there are several recently completed commercial office buildings. These include the controversial demolition and redevelopment of English Heritage’s HQ at No.23 Savile Row W1 and to the west of London an office campus at Stockley Park UB11. The firm also sensitively re-designed Paternoster Square EC4 to house the London Stock Exchange, with a contemporary masonry-clad design that complements the adjacent St Paul’s Cathedral.
Mr Deacon had announced earlier this year that HGI were trading 12-13 Henrietta Street in Covent Garden WC2, in exchange for the Bishops Court building in Bishopsgate E1, owned by Royal London Asset Management (RLAM).
Back in March the two City property investors exchanged contracts on the deal to swap the two buildings, in a sign of increased activity in the office investment market.
The freehold Covent Garden property, which was also held within HGI's Central London Office Fund I, is a prime office building, providing 26,100 sq ft (2,500 m2) of office, retail and ancillary accommodation over basement, ground and four upper floors. Henrietta Street is multi-let to four occupiers on a lease term of 2014 - 2029. Bishops Court provides substantially more commercial space, in total 53,500 sq ft of net office and ancillary accommodation over basement, ground and five upper floors. The property is currently let to HSBC Insurance Holdings on a lease expiring in August 2012.