CONSTRUCTION & COMMERCIAL PROPERTY

CONSTRUCTION
& COMMERCIAL PROPERTY

LATEST NEWS

Business & Innovation Magazine

by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 16 Aug, 2017
In the run up to SGS College opening the doors at the Berkeley GREEN Campus to learners this September, Managing Director of
Kier Construction Central, Mark Pausey, visited the site, Tuesday 15 August, donating a defibrillator to the campus and taking a tour of the new facilities, along with SGS Group Chief Executive, Kevin Hamblin.

Kier, who are the main contractors on both SGS Berkeley GREEN and the University Technical College (UTC), started work at the former Berkeley Nuclear Laboratories site in October 2015, refurbishing a former Magnox engineering hall building. Now named the John Huggett Engineering Hall, the facility will provide workshops, project spaces and offices for engineering learners.

In 2016, work commenced on the demolition of an adjacent building and the construction of a brand new £12m, 6,000m2 University Technical College (UTC), which will provide specialist education to learners aged 14-18 in digital technology, cyber security and advanced engineering.

The redeveloped site will offer some of the best training facilities in the country for the Built Environment, Welding, Engineering and Digital Technologies. The Campus, which came in response to the region’s growth in engineering and nuclear, will deliver full and part- time training to learners from the age of 14 upwards including apprenticeships, adult re-training programmes and degree level learning.

The redevelopment also brings new business opportunities to the area, offering 300,000ft2 of commercial floor space consisting of office premises, workshops, laboratories, conference rooms and more.

Leading property, residential, construction and services group Kier, locally based in Gloucester, is an ‘employer of the future’ partner to SGS Berkeley Green and has been actively engaged with students during construction works. A summer project invited students to have their say on the future of their campus by conceptualizing their new breakout area, exploring connections with the built environment and challenging them to build upon their presentation skills in a Dragons Den themed judging forum. A summer work placement programme elevated nine students understanding of the construction world through short practical challenges complimented by interactive learning sessions.

Speaking of the proactive engagement with students of Berkeley GREEN, Assistant Principal of the UTC, Andrew Keenan said: “Not only have Kier built a fantastic state of the art building for the UTC, they have also supported throughout our recruitment of students. They have agreed to maintain an ongoing relationship to help develop our future graduates who are looking to progress into Design and Civil Engineering. The support already given by Kier on open days, information sessions, work experience and UTC tours is a fantastic example of how employers and UTCs can work together to make learning relevant to young people’s future careers. We are looking forward to continuing this relationship with a company who are so obviously invested in giving young people the best start possible.”

Commenting on the development at Berkeley GREEN, Mark said: “These are fantastic modern facilities for students and the local community. The Kier team has established excellent relationships with SGS Berkeley Green which we hope will progress further with future work on the site and with our involvement as employer of the future”

Speaking about the new campus, Kevin said: “This brand new, state of the art facility, is part of a £12m investment in education in Gloucestershire, which Kier have completed one week early and under budget. The College is really looking forward to seeing its learners take advantage of these new facilities this September.”

To find out about Berkeley GREEN Campus facilities, opportunities and open events, the first of which takes place Saturday 30th September, visit: www.berkeleygreenutc.org.uk
by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 07 Aug, 2017
The Pegasus Group, which has offices in Cirencester, has secured Planning Permission and Listed Building Consent for The Ivy Group to convert a former Lloyds Bank branch at Montpelier Walk, Cheltenham to a Class A3 restaurant with outdoor seating area.

Originally built in the early 1800s, the Grade I listed Rotunda Building is one of the most recognisable and important buildings in Cheltenham with its dome inspired by The Pantheon in Rome. The conversion will see the restoration of the interior of the building and most significantly, the opening up of the ‘long room’ which is currently partitioned into offices.

After extensive negotiations with Historic England and Cheltenham Borough Council Conservation Officers, it was agreed that a new circular bar and servery will be located in the centre of the Rotunda and act as the focal point of the new restaurant.
by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 03 Aug, 2017
Hermes Investment Management (Hermes), the £30.8 billion manager, has agreed to sell a 50% equity stake in Milton Park to Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) for approximately £200 million.
 
Oxfordshire’s Milton Park accommodates leading global science and technology companies as well as emerging businesses, including a number of spin-off organisations from the University of Oxford. At 250 acres, Milton Park is one of Europe’s largest and most successful integrated business, science and technology parks and home to over 250 organisations employing over 9,000 people.
 
Chris Taylor, Head of Private Markets, Hermes Investment Management, said: “The deal marks another significant milestone in our growing relationship with CPPIB, which has already proved highly successful through our JV within central London and our collaboration at Wellington Place in Leeds and Paradise, Birmingham. Our interests are well aligned and, as such, we have been able to work together to deliver strong financial returns and positive impact upon society and the environment.
 
“Recycling capital in this manner allows us to adequately diversify our global portfolio and invest further in existing and new strategic holdings, where we believe additional value can be added in line with our focus on the occupational impacts arising from growing trends of urbanisation, globalisation, technology and demographic shifts.”
 
MEPC Limited (MEPC), a leading property developer and asset manager, which manages Milton Park on behalf of Hermes Investment Management, will remain as asset manager and developer under the joint ownership. MEPC is currently overseeing the development of Park Drive East, one of the largest speculative developments in Oxfordshire, accommodating the ongoing demand for quality office and laboratory space in the region.
 
Andrea Orlandi, Managing Director and Head of Real Estate Investments Europe, CPPIB, added: “This transaction provides CPPIB with a further opportunity to grow our existing relationship with Hermes, one of our key strategic partners. MEPC, our asset and development manager on Wellington Place has a strong track record in developing and transforming major real estate projects. We see significant future growth potential at Milton Park as it continues to build on its attractiveness to the life-science sector - a major pillar of the thriving Oxford economy.”
 
James Dipple, CEO of MEPC, said: “This deal offers an excellent opportunity for us to grow our relationship with CPPIB, which has already been cemented through our work at Wellington Place. This investment is testament to Milton Park’s reputation and MEPC’s excellent track record of delivering strong investor returns by meeting the needs of our customers through a clear understanding of their occupational requirements.
 
“With the added support of CPPIB, we will continue to accommodate the expansion of businesses on the park through an identified investment programme set out in our long term business plans.”
by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 03 Aug, 2017
Ground floor accommodation at King Charles House, Park End Street, owned by Green Templeton College, has been leased at £30 per sq ft in a deal arranged by leading commercial property specialists VSL & Partners.
 
It is the latest example of prime office accommodation reaching new peaks this year with another development in St Aldates also seeing significant rises. A systematic refurbishment has taken place and the building has now achieved rents between £27.50 per sq ft and £29 per sq ft on four separate lettings.
 
Tom Barton, director at VSL & Partners, said: “Record office rents in Oxford city centre are being achieved thanks to historic low levels of supply and continued demand.
 
“£30 per sq ft will now be the new benchmark for rents in the city centre.”
 
The building at 58 – 60 St Aldates was bought by Vantage Property Limited Partnership at the beginning of this year when rents were at £23.50 per sq ft.
by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 03 Aug, 2017
Gloucester’s commercial property market performed well in the first half of 2017, supported by robust occupational demand for industrial and office space, particularly from the engineering and residential redevelopment sectors, says property consultancy Alder King in its half-year report Market Monitor Update.
 
Despite the ongoing political and economic uncertainty, occupational activity has remained resilient this year, with strong transaction levels.
 
Of greater concern is the steady fall in stock levels across all size ranges and sectors. Office and industrial rental and capital values have increased in many centres across the region including Gloucester as supply shortages continue to bite.  
 
The key findings of the report are:
 
  • Half-year industrial take-up in Gloucester totalled 350,000 sq ft, half of 2016’s record take-up of 700,000 sq ft. The most significant deal of the first half of the year is an agreement to construct a new 110,000 sq ft manufacturing facility at Gloucester Business Park.  
  • Industrial supply in the city has fallen further to 200,000 sq ft, its lowest level for 15 years. 
  • Whilst developers remain cautious about speculative office development, there are a number of new build industrial schemes underway in Gloucester and there is strong demand for office and industrial refurbishments where schemes can be turned around quickly. Speculative schemes now underway include two buildings by St Modwen at Gateway 12 and Howard Tenens is about to start the part-speculative construction of Phase 2 at Severn Distribution Park which will provide over 440,000 sq ft in three buildings.  
  • Gloucester’s office market performed well with take-up of 75,000 sq ft. Notable deals so far this year include the 6,000 sq ft letting of 1260 Landsdowne Court on Gloucester Business Park to Lockheed Martin and the 12,500 sq ft letting of Building 1, The Office Campus at Barnwood to River Marketing.  
  • The supply of available office stock currently stands at 140,000 sq ft. Of this only 30,000 sq ft is Grade A stock. There is growing interest in new build space as occupiers are often unable to source suitable existing buildings.
  • The lack of supply in the city’s out of town office market and increased construction costs have led to increases in the headline rent which has risen from £19 per sq ft to £20 per sq ft. Rents on secondary office space have also increased to £14-15 per sq ft. In the industrial market, Grade A rents have increased to £6.75 per sq ft.
  • The city’s retail and leisure market has been active.  Demand for drive-thru opportunities and out of town retail units remains strong with little availability. Whittle Square at Gloucester Business Park is fully let, as is St Oswalds Park.
  • The investment market has been held back by a lack of stock. Prices have been sustained by strong demand and competitive bidding, particularly where benefiting from rental growth or opportunities to add value.
by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 03 Aug, 2017
Fast-growing Dairy Partners has completed the purchase of a 4.5 acre development site on the Stroudwater Business Park at Stonehouse following a deal brokered by Bruton Knowles on behalf of clients Ashville Asset Management.
 
The site was originally purchased on behalf of clients by Ashville Asset Management who have a long history adding value to strategic land and providing high quality bespoke buildings for companies. Consent was secured for a 90,000 sq ft commercial use on behalf of their clients before the land was marketed for sale as a whole or for bespoke design and build opportunities.  
 
Bruton Knowles acted jointly with Cushman Wakefield on behalf of Ashville in selling the land with the benefit of the planning consent.
 
Will Bennett from Dairy Partners said: “We are wanting to update our offices and warehousing as we have out grown our current location. We wanted to stay within the business park as we have a well-established presence here - location wise, it is perfect for us.”
 
Robert Smith from Bruton Knowles’ Gloucester office said: “Dairy Partners is one of the fastest-growing independent businesses in the country producing mozzarella cheese for the UK, Europe and overseas markets from their sites in Gloucestershire and Carmarthenshire.”
 
Existing occupiers at Stroudwater Business Park include Schlumberger, Renishaw, Dairy Crest, Dentsply and Delphi.
 
In addition and in close proximity there is currently a further plot of 1.2 acres available to purchase as a whole or offer companies a design and build option.  
 
Phil Cranstone from Cushman Wakefield added: “Stroudwater Business Park offers bespoke design and build opportunities for businesses looking to expand in Gloucestershire.
 
“This is the latest phase of the business park which is already an established location providing much needed accommodation for business in the Stonehouse and Stroud Valleys.”
 
 “Ashville have more than 45 years’ experience in providing bespoke buildings for businesses and are also able to offer the plots for sale. The developers are offering very flexible options in terms of freehold or leasehold basis. The Brunel Way site is available to purchase as a whole.”
by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 07 Jul, 2017

The appetite for commercial space at Harwell Campus, near Oxford continues to grow as Harwell Campus announces the largest speculative commercial development in Oxfordshire’s history.  

The scheme totals 190,000 sq ft and is incremental to the existing Runway buildings of 90,000 sq ft which are being refurbished. The total value of these developments is more than £80m.

The new buildings follow the construction of the Genesis building, which completed in June 2016, and will provide similar light industrial/R&D space but with greatly enhanced elevations and architectural quality. This offers companies an attractive HQ location where all functions, from production to marketing, can be cost effectively co-located on a campus with ample room to expand.

The Zephyr building is a multi-let building of 60,000 sq ft, and is accompanied by two sister buildings of 40,000 sq ft each, designed for single/dual occupation. These buildings complement the 50,000 sq ft Quad One office scheme that’s currently under construction.

Tenant demand is such that Harwell Campus expects to have substantially pre-let these schemes prior to planned completion and is already making preparations for another 100,000 sq ft building, to be delivered by the end of 2018.

William Cooper, Partner at Harwell Campus Management, said: ‘We are very happy to share the success and expansion of organisations already on campus and equally, we are thrilled that external organisations are also seeing the many benefits that Harwell that can offer them. The campus is witnessing the most significant growth seen in this sector anywhere in the UK at the present time, creating a European innovation district comparable to MIT in the US.’

Tom Edgerley, Development Director at U+I Group PLC, said: “U+I is proud to be part of the Harwell team and investing in the growth of the UK’s science and technology economy. Bringing like-minded organisations together at Harwell has already proven beneficial to the many businesses on site and the new space will provide an exciting opportunity to nurture more innovation on campus.”

Harwell Campus is a public private partnership between Harwell Oxford Partners and U+I Group PLC and two Government backed agencies, the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) and the UK Atomic Energy Agency (UKAEA).

Housing over £2 billion of scientific equipment the campus is home to over 200 different organisations that are working to solve some of the biggest problems faced by mankind including an ageing population, healthcare, disease control, space discovery and applications, climate change, cleaner, greener energy and new advanced materials.

Harwell Campus has been innovating in science and technology for over 75 years, with many world firsts to its credit. These include generating nuclear energy for the first time in Europe in 1947 and developing CADET, the world’s first transistorised computer in 1953. Earlier this year the Government pledged £102m to the Rosalind Franklin Institute that will have a central hub located at Harwell, linking it to multiple universities. The campus is also set to benefit from the government’s latest UK Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund investment of £1bn over four years that will direct funding into six cutting edge technologies including satellites and space technology, healthcare, medicine, robotics, batteries and materials of the future.

Harwell is one of the world’s most important science and innovation locations. It has a growing reputation as the UK’s gateway to space with over 65 space and satellite applications related organisations located on campus and is now seeing rapid growth in the Life Sciences and Health-Tech sector with over 1,000 people working in this field alone at Harwell.  In addition to space and life sciences, the campus hosts an array of other key sectors including, Big Data and Supercomputing, Energy and Environment and Advanced Engineering and Materials. With a legacy of many world firsts, the campus comprises 710 acres, over 200 organisations and 5,500 people.

 The Cluster of about 70 Space organisations at Harwell is testament to the power of co-locating industry, academia and the public sector alongside investors and entrepreneurs. The European Space Agency, RAL Space, The UK Space Agency, Airbus, Thales Alenia Space, Lockheed Martin, and Deimos Space UK can all be found on the Campus. This creates many opportunities for collaboration, increasing capability and sharing risk. Being within a Cluster brings access to high-quality common infrastructure, facilities and expertise, alongside exposure to new markets

by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 07 Jul, 2017

The Oxford Science Park  is the first science, technology and business park to use the ground-breaking geomatics and simulation technology, that is used by Formula 1® teams and automotive equipment manufacturers, to visualise the Park and its new Schrodinger Building, in 3D Apps. The Park, which is home to more than 2,500 people across 70 companies, used the technology to create an interactive 3D Park plan.

 

The Park instructed Severn Partnership , a Shropshire-based geomatics land surveying company, which drove around the site using the Leica Geosystems Pegasus Two vehicle mounted ‘reality capture’ kit, plotting one million 3D points a second, linked to GPS coordinates in real time and aided by a missile guidance inertial navigation system.

 

Conventionally, the 3D data would remain within technical, architectural or CAD software and be archived once used for planning and design. However, looking to push the technology further, the 3D Park plan was then converted into an interactive 3D visualisation by Seeable , a technical visualisation studio also based in Shropshire. The Schrödinger Building  was then 3D visualised using the same state of the art game engine technology.

 

Dr Nigel Moore, director, Seeable Ltd explained: “As a hub for technical innovation and scientific research, it was a natural choice for The Oxford Science Park to use cutting edge survey and visualisation techniques to update the current Park plan.

 

“What would usually take a survey team weeks to complete with conventional equipment was completed within two days on-site using the latest high accuracy mobile mapping techniques from geomatics experts. Having mapped the Science Park in record time, the scan data was used as the accurate base readings to create a 3D Park plan. This base model then provided the platform to accurately visualise new proposed buildings in 3D, giving a virtual reality style experience.”

 

The 3D technology allows users to have a bird’s eye view of the Park, with contextual information added to each building. 360 degree panoramic images were also embedded into the visualisation App to merge the virtual with the actual ‘street view’ type perspective of key locations. Users are also able to ‘walk through’ The Schrodinger Building, experiencing the finished building before it is completed.

 

Piers Scrimshaw-Wright, managing director, The Oxford Science Park said: “We wanted to be able to showcase the Park and The Schrödinger Building both in our Marketing Suite here at The Oxford Science Park and also when out of the office using a tablet. This flexibility has already proved invaluable.

 

“We have a strong ethos of discovery and innovation across the Park, and it was a natural decision to invest in cutting edge technology to help market the Park and its new development phase. Businesses are increasingly familiar with virtual reality and we felt it important to embrace this technology to give our varied stakeholders a visual medium that makes orientation around the Park easy, and to accurately represent our new Schrödinger Building before it is built.

 

“Our development plans are ambitious, and it is only right that we have used state of the art technology to bring our plans to life, and portray a high level vision for the Park. The visualisations produced by the Severn Partnership and Seeable are simply brilliant.”

 

With the Internet of things (IoT) a hot topic for technology advancements, the 3D Park plan is the first of a new breed of visualisation Apps which can be expanded to visualise data just like smart city projects.

 

Dr Nigel Moore concluded: “In the future, buildings and sites will create IoT data for everything from energy use to bus timetables, parking spaces or electric vehicle charging locations. A crystal ball prediction or science fiction becoming science fact? Either way, The Oxford Science Park is riding the wave of technological advance and future proofing itself en-route.”

 

The Oxford Science Park is owned and managed by Magdalen College, Oxford. Created in 1991, the Park upholds the College’s heritage and provides one of the most influential science & technology environments in the UK. Oveer 450,000 sq. ft. of net lettable space and the Park is now home to more than 2,500 people and over 70 businesses, ranging from start-ups based in the Magdalen Centre innovation hub to major international companies including Amey, Becton Dickinson, Circassia, IBM, OrganOx, OxSonics, Oxford Nanopore, Sharp Laboratories, TripAdvisor, and Oxford Technology Management.

 

Following the successful acquisition of M&G Real Estate’s 50% share in December 2015, Magdalen College now has 100% ownership and control of The Oxford Science Park. In addition to being a key property investment, the Park is at the heart of the College’s strategy to support discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship.

 

Magdalen College will continue to develop The Oxford Science Park as a long-term strategic asset, with ambitious plans to create an additional 250,000+ sq ft of office and laboratory space on the remaining 10+ acres of land over the next 10 years. This additional capacity will support the growth of businesses already based on the Park, providing flexibility with their space requirements, and enabling new companies to enjoy the Park’s beautiful character and atmosphere.

 

The Oxford Science Park is located approximately four miles south-east of Oxford city centre, just off the City’s southern ring road. It has easy access to the M40 and A34, as well as to Heathrow Airport and mainline train services.

 

For further information, please visit: www.oxfordsp.com

by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 31 May, 2017
Pictured left to right - John Baysore, President & CEO Dematic; Frank Herzog, Executive Vice President Finance & CFO; Jeff Moss, Executive Vice President Dematic International; Stuart Stables, Managing Director Northern Europe 
by Business & Innovation Magazine Reporter 31 May, 2017

“Gloucester is a city on the up and it is now really going places”, was the positive message to Gloucestershire business people.

Addressing a Business West networking breakfast of the Gloucester Chamber of Commerce, Marketing Gloucester’s chief executive, Jason Smith, said: “Gloucester is a city on the up. We are beginning to see a real sea change here—there are diggers everywhere”.

And the president of the Gloucester Chamber, Mark Boyce told the meeting: “Today is a good indication of the way Gloucester is growing and progressing. We are going places and you can see the momentum building.”

Jason Smith said an extra 1900 jobs had been created in the city over the last four and a half years from the tourism initiatives and events like the Tall Ships- created and run by Marketing Gloucester.

He added: “The city is holding its own in terms of retail footfall and our events have had a lot to do with that. Last year, we overtook Cheltenham with our number of tourists.

“Gloucester is now the premier tourist attraction in terms of the conurbations in this county. We can increase that by putting on more of these events and it is fact that tourism to the city has created an extra 1900 jobs in the last four and a half years”.

Jason said there had been great enthusiasm for the city’s BID (Business Improvement District) by companies in the city centre with over 700 interviews conducted to ask businesses what they would like to see happen over the next five years.

He told the breakfast at Bill’s in The Quays: “Gloucester is now recognised as the 11th   most safe place in the country.

“It is the fourth in the country for the best type of customer service and the second friendliest city in the country.

“But it is number 1 according to a survey for community spirit, and that is indicative as to where Gloucester is at the moment”.

Voting by businesses in the city centre to secure the BID continues until the end of June. Jason said that the cash contributions by local businesses to become part of it could be as low as a decent cup of coffee a week.

“One of the things built into the BID business plan is for 200 hours a week of registered security guards on the streets of the city”, said Jason. ”They will have real powers to ensure we have safe streets.”

Mark Boyce said that his hundred Chamber of Commerce members were fully behind the BID, and that businesses joining would be offered free membership of the Chamber for a year.

He commented: “The initial scepticism has now faded away for the fiscal and social regeneration of Gloucester and we are only part of the way   on our journey.

“The Chamber is fully supportive of the Gloucester BID. We see this as the next critical step in the development of our city centre”.

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