Transport for London (TFL) has revealed it is seeking a partner to act in a joint venture with it in the development of its commercial office portfolio.
It is seeking to develop three locations on its estate, at Bank, Paddington and Southwark Stations. This will envisage over-station developments to provide a combined 595,000 sq ft of office and retail space. Planning consent or a resolution to grant permission is already in place for all three developments.
Builder’s merchants in London may be very busy with supplying goods to the contractors when these developments come to the construction stage, including steel, concrete, insulation and also a large amount of timber.
The latter will be a notable feature of the development at Southwark Tube Station, where the 17-storey hybrid timber building will be “one of the greenest and healthiest large-scale commercial buildings in the UK,” TFL stated. It will feature 220,000 sq ft of shopping and office space with external terraces on most of its floors.
Following its recent reopening after significant redevelopment beneath the city’s streets, including the digging of a whole new tunnel, Bank station also has a new entrance on Cannon Street and this is where the new over-station development will be built. Containing 140,000 sq ft of commercial space, it will be eight storeys tall.
The third development at Paddington will be known as Paddington Triangle and occupy a site adjacent to the Brand Union Canal and the new Elizabeth Line Crossrail station. It will be the largest of the trio of developments, with 235,000 sq ft of space and measuring 19 storeys in height. It will feature a canal side reception and some of its energy will come from ground source heat pumps.
The green credentials of the buildings will be a key aspect that the materials chosen and design features will contribute to. TFL noted that all three “have the potential to target BREEAM Outstanding” status, with the Southwark development also designed to achieve WELL platinum certification.
Speaking about the developments, head of property development at TFL Scott Anderson said: “We are delighted to be going to the property industry with this exciting opportunity and are looking for a partner to create best in class commercial office workspaces.”
He added that the development of the TFL estate will include both office developments and new housing, with 1,700 homes under construction and work expected to start on another 2,400 in the current financial year.
As well as providing London with much-needed homes and commercial space, Mr Anderson noted that this will also provide TFL with substantial extra income, reducing its reliance on fares.
Despite fears about UK economic growth as consumers are squeezed by the highest inflation in 40 years, the construction sector is set to be very busy with new office developments in London, according to the Deloitte London Crane Survey for Summer 2022.
It noted inflation had brought a pause in starts, but said the projections were that this would only be “brief” due to continuing high levels of confidence.
The current scene is dominated by refurbishments. These accounted for 31 out of 36 new projects recorded in the survey, while just five were new builds.