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Leeds start

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Leeds schemes emerging

A recent report by Colliers International on the Leeds office market over the last 6 months, reinforced research by Cityoffices, showing rising office take-up driven by occupier pre-lets and expansions and a healthy pipeline of new office space on its way in the city centre.

After a solid first quarter with office take up of 150,000 sq ft mainly in small deals, came the announcement of Addleshaw Goddard, the law firm, signing a pre-let on 4,645 sq m (50,000 sq ft) of offices at Bruntwood and Kier’s 3 Sovereign Square.

Leeds office take up of 549,000 sq ft during 2014, was down on the 2013 total, but 10% above the 5 year average. Large recent deals include: KPMG taking 60,000 sq ft at Sovereign Street, a pre-let of 32,382 sq ft to Squire Patton Boggs at 6 Wellington Place; DAC Beachcroft taking 23,000 sq ft at Boultbee Brooks’ refurbishment of St Paul’s House; FDM goup taking 17,000 sq ft at Whitehall Riverside.

Professional Services (notably law firms) and healthcare occupiers were the most active in 2014, but the year also saw deals to Green Flag, BSkyB and TPP. There are about 400,000 sq ft of office requirements circulating in Leeds at the moment.

In terms of development, future Leeds office supply levels are set to be boosted with schemes on site at Central Square, Wellington Place, 3 Sovereign Square and 6 Queen Street which will deliver 450,000 sq ft of office space over the next two years. Further new space is also potentially in the pipeline for 2017 and could include: Latitude Blue (120,000 sq ft), 5 Wellington Place (70,000 sq ft), City Square House (175,000 sq ft) and the Yorkshire Post Site (200,000 sq ft).

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Leeds report

A recent office market report on Leeds by Lambert Smith Hampton highlighted a surge of letting activity towards the end of 2013. Office take-up for the year reached 250,000 sq ft for the quarter and the total of office deals for 2013 reached nearly 1.3m sq ft. Despite a number of recent high profile transactions in 2013, most of which were tipped in advance by Metropolis, including Leeds City Council pre-letting 50,000 sq ft, Lowell Group taking 80,000 sq ft, HSBC (60,000 sq ft), Squire Sanders (50,000 sq ft), NHS Leadership Academy (22,000 sq ft) and KPMG taking 28,000 sq ft at Broad Gate, some 60% of deals were for lettings of less than 5,000 sq ft. The Metropolis database reveals 40 outstanding office requirements in Leeds including Sky and PWC both looking for 60,000 sq ft each. In total, the forty firms are currently searching for over 500,000 sq ft of office space in the city, with another 30 firms due to make decisions ahead of lease expiries in 2014 and 2015. The availability of grade A office space, newly constructed or refurbished, has fallen to a five year low at 6.6%. Total office availability in Leeds is 10%. Agents are forecasting top office rents of £26 psf in 2014 with £30 psf in 2015. Recent development news includes Town Centre Securities gaining consent for the next 375,000 sq ft phase of its Whitehall Riverside scheme; MEPC’s 35,000 sq ft 10 Wellington Place scheme was recently topped out and a number of medium/large refurbishments such as Minerva and 15 Park Row are planned or underway.

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Leeds scheme demolition plan

Two storeys of new office space, added to the recently completed Toronto Square building in Leeds, may have to be pulled down after the owner of a neighbouring building complained that construction of the additional office space had interfered with the amount of natural light reaching his building. Highcross, the developer behind the building, is now required to pull down the additional storeys. An appeal has been now been lodged. The Toronto Square development has already secured several tenants to the office space that looks set to be demolished.

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BAM plans Latitude 2

BAM Properties is in process of securing detailed planning consent for the second phase of its "Latitude" office scheme in Leeds. The new building, to be known as Latitude, 2 Whitehall, will provide approximately 11,148 sq m (120,000 sq ft) of office space over seven/eight floors, and will push the boundaries of energy efficiency. BAM will wait for a pre-let before it proceeds with the build.

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Mid 2008 start for The Works

Reland Properties' 92,902 sq m (1,000,000 sq ft) mixed use scheme on Hunslet Street, referred to as "The Works", is expected to start on site in mid 2008. Reland is currently in advanced negotiations with a main contractor. Early 2010 completion looks likely.

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Bridgewater completion

Bovis Lend Lease has officially handed over the completed £60m Bridgewater Place scheme to St James' Securities. The 30-storey tower designed by Aedas was started in early 2003. The building has been pre-let by law firm Eversheds.

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Clarence Dock offices completing

The two Crosby Lend Lease office developments at Clarence Dock are now nearing completion. The 6,626 sq m (71,320 sq ft) Livingstone House, on which GE Real Estate has a long leasehold interest, is due to complete in March and Stanley House of 2,389 sq m (25,720 sq ft) will complete in May.

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Contractor appointed on Mayfair

A main contractor has been appointed to build Sterling Capitol’s Mayfair development on Wellington Street, Leeds, LS1. The 27-storey £36m mixed-used scheme is mainly residential but will provide 5,574 sq m (60,000 sq ft) of speculative office on the lower floors. Work is expected to begin by the end of 2005 and complete during 2008.

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New owner for Tower Works site.

Regional development agency, Yorkshire Forward has purchased the planned Tower Works development site on Globe Road for a reported £12m. The site, situated in Leeds's Holbeck area, has planning permission for 3,623 sq m (39,000 sq ft) of offices, 3,808 sq m (41,000 sq ft) of retail space as well as residential apartments. Yorkshire Forward will begin searching for a developer towards the end of the year. Carey Jones was the architect involved in the original plans.

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Scotfield starts on Leeds scheme

Scotfield has started work on phase one of The Gateway mixed use scheme on a 1.7ha (4-acre) riverside site at East Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire. The scheme comprises 642 flats, 2,787 sq m (30,000 sq ft) of offices with retail and leisure and a 218-bed Accor Etap brand hotel. Completion of phase one is expected in August 2006.

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Oldroyd wins Craven contract.

Oldroyd Building & Design has been awarded the £6m main contract for the Craven Bros speculative office development at Millshaw in Leeds. The company is on site and by late autumn will have completed the 836 sq m (9,000 sq ft) project, designed by Kilmartin.

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AWG sells City Square House site.

AWG Developments has sold the site of its new 12,350 sq m net (132,935 sq ft) City Square House development in Leeds. McAleer and Rushe Group, the County Tyrone-based developers and contractors has paid £11 million for the cleared site which has planning permission for a 10-storey scheme on Wellington Street. It is understood that McAleer and Rushe intend to speculatively build the scheme following a full review of the design.

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Munroe K plans refurbishment

Munroe K, the developer, is planning an £11m refurbishment of the Arlington Business Centre at White Rose Office Park in Leeds, West Yorkshire. The plans include a new separate entrance for HSBC. O2 has recently taken 8,802 sq m (87,000 sq ft) as additional space at the centre.

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Caddicks goes for final phase

Caddick Developments has submitted a planning application to Leeds City Council for the development of the remaining phase of the Quarry Hill scheme in Leeds. The proposals for the £100 m scheme on an eight acre site comprise 74,321 sq m (800,000 sq ft) of mixed use space including 18,580 sq m (200,000 sq ft) of office space.

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New scheme from Craven Brothers

The Craven Brothers have applied for planning permission to build 3 new speculative office buildings in the Millshaw area of Leeds. The architect for the £9m project is Tony Plowman of Kilmartin Plowman.

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