London & South East

Office and retail development to hit the West End

Set to open in 2012, an exciting new development will transform the site known as Marcol House whilst retaining its historic features.

Acquired by Great Portland Estates plc (GPE) from Istithmar World PJSC, Marcol House is a Grade II listed office and retail development.  It consists of three amalgamated sites in central London, Regent Street and Margaret Street which fall under the name of Marcol House.

Work commenced in early 2010 on the 111,548 sq ft project, which is located on the corner of Regent Street and Margaret Street, just 150 metres north of Oxford circus.  This followed the completion of work in 2011 on an existing 25,200 sq ft office building at 23/24 Newman Street.

At the Newman Street site 22 residential apartments were converted from its origins as office space, with 16 of these apartments made available for private sale.

The completed commercial development will see the creation of seven floors of commercial office space.  As Marcol House is a listed building it will retain its external features, but will be modernised internally to meet its intended office requirements.

GPE acquired the West End development in 2009.  As part of the arrangement this included the formation of a profit share and debt structuring agreement with European real estate bank, Eurohypo.  As part of the agreement and to help provide funding, Eurohypo will reconstruct a profit share arrangement in the project, whilst the remainder of the funding has come from Great Portland Estates plc itself.

Chief Executive of Great Portland Estates plc, Toby Courtauld said: “This deal will add two high quality West End developments to our exciting and substantial programme at a time when we think conditions in the office market will favour the landlord.

“We hope to be able to use this structure on other deals in the future and we look forward to working with our partners to make the most out of these high quality developments.”

GPE has taken on the project by paying an upfront cost of £10 million, with an agreement included for a share of any potential profits in Marcol House’s future.

Under the arrangement for Marcol House, GPE has provided all the development costs, which combined total £78.1 million and if the profit sharing and debt structuring scheme is the success that it aims to be, the debt structure plan will become a template for the company for more developments to come.

Acting as development manager, the company will receive £26.3 million in return, splitting the remainder of the profit equally between GPE and Eurohypo.  The excess of the combined property is valued at £165 million and will be split evenly between the two companies.

Co-Head of Eurohypo, Max Sinclair said: “It is our view that Marcol House is a fundamentally high quality asset and that working with GPE in this way is the best approach to recreating value in the medium term.”

He added: “We are delighted to work with GPE on a property with undoubted potential in a location where they have an unparalleled track record in generating value.”

 Loveld UK 

Based in Belgium, Loveld started in 1985 and is now one of the major architectural pre-cast companies in Western Europe.  The company has two factories, one based in Belgium and the other in Holland.  Its production capacity is up to 125000 sq metres of pre-cast cladding panels a year.

Loveld specialises in architectural pre-cast, which includes panels with a finish ranging from acid-etched concrete, to sand blasted and polished concrete.  It also specialises in a range of cast-in cladding materials, including bricks, ceramic tiles and natural stone.

The company will produce and install self-bearing stone faced cladding units on Marcol House.  The cladding units are self-bearing, so all the vertical loads are transferred direct to the foundations, meaning no vertical loads are transferred to the steel structure of the building.

Director of Loveld UK Ltd Bruno Vanhulle said: “Loveld always focuses on offering a complete concept for the cladding. Working in close relationship with window contractors and other interfaces.”

“We have undertaken numerous jobs in London where we incorporated the windows in our panels providing a completely finished and waterproof façade. We are always happy to brainstorm with the clients and architects to come up with the best and most cost effective solutions.”

IBSECAD

IBSECAD is a leader in the CAD co-ordination field. From their global office network, they provide drawing office solutions using advanced 3D technology.

The company aims to help speed up the design process by allowing clients to visualise how initial plans can be translated into sophisticated 2D, 3D and 4D CAD models.

For the Marcol House project, IBSECAD fused the gap between design and construction by transforming the design drawings into working drawings using a BIM platform. Once the project is complete, IBSECAD will hand the information back to the client, who will keep the 3D representation for the life cycle of the building.

David Robinson, IBSECAD, said: “The sooner people start using BIM, the better the project will run. It is important that it starts with the design team and is not left with the trades to start it later. It’s a team effort and everyone needs to enter into it to reap the full effects.”

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Roma Publications

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