Landmark Glasgow site acquired for one of city’s largest new offices
A consortium of real estate developers is set to construct one of Glasgow’s largest single-building new offices after acquiring a development site in the heart of the city’s International Financial Services District.
Vanguard Real Estate has acquired a 0.79-acre site on the south side of Argyle Street and bounded by Robertson Street and York Street. It was formerly the location of a proposed Jumeirah Hotel.
The joint venture has appointed Glasgow-based architects Cooper Cromar to progress plans for the 280,000 sq ft development.
When complete, the development will be able to accommodate up to 4,000 people, revitalising a key site which has lain derelict for nearly two decades.
A minimum 12 weeks of pre-application community consultation is now underway through a Proposal of Application Notice, including public exhibitions at The Radisson Blu Hotel held yesterday and on March 15, before the submission of a full planning application to Glasgow City Council in Spring 2018.
The site previously held consent for a hotel and serviced apartments. The development team is currently undertaking a variety of economic and historic environment studies on the site.
Conor Osborne, director, Vanguard Real Estate, said: “We believe this is one of the best undeveloped opportunities in Scotland – and are looking forward to working with the council to deliver a forward-thinking office scheme. It will provide a competitive edge for the city, giving Glasgow a high-calibre development to attract blue-chip occupiers, and demonstrate the city is ready to support inward investment. We engage with potential occupiers at the earliest opportunity as part of an innovative approach to providing frictionless solutions to tenants.”
Vanguard Real Estate is formed of Abu Dhabi-headquartered Gulf Resources Development & Investment (GRDI) and property professional Jim Kelly – and brings an international development track-record having collectively delivered c£2 billion of property projects globally.
Jim Kelly, former owner principal of St Francis Property Group, has a legacy portfolio with a gross development value of c£500 million. This includes site works for HSBC’s new office and Paradise Circus, Birmingham.
The vendor of the site, Singapore property company Scotsbridge, is led in Glasgow by entrepreneur Shazad Bakhsh, who played a central role in assembling the site and retains a minority share in the site ownership.
Shazad Bakhsh, executive director of Scotsbridge, said: “This will be one of the most important new office developments Glasgow has seen in decades and will support significant levels of new jobs and investment. We are delighted to have assembled the land and now to partner with Vanguard Real Estate to progress this landmark development.”
Conor Osborne added: “This acquisition forms part of our ongoing wider development programme and demonstrates our appetite to undertake large-scale developments in the UK. We have an international reputation in delivering best in class developments having completed a significant number of projects across a diverse range of markets with a total development value in excess of £2bn.”