Work to begin on Rogers' Cheesegrater 'early next year'
British Land and a Canadian-backed developer have signed a deal to take forward Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners’ Leadenhall building in the City of London.
Oxford Properties - the real-estate arm of Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (Omers) pension fund - has agreed to joint-fund the £340 million project, which will see the 47-storey tower become the Square Mile’s latest landmark.
Work on the 57,000 sq-metre development is expected to begin early next year, with the shell and core of the building completed by mid-2014.
The skyscraper, dubbed the ‘Cheesegrater’ because of its wedge-like design, has been on the drawing board for almost seven years.
British Land chief executive Chris Grigg said: ‘We believe that the Leadenhall building will provide the City of London with a unique combination of iconic architecture with world-class public and office spaces.’
A competition-winning scheme to temporarily turn the site of the mothballed Leadenhall tower into a city farm was shelved in March 2010.
In October 2008, Bath-based Mitchell Taylor Workshop saw off a dozen other up-and-coming practices to win the contest, organised by developer British Land, to find a short-term use for the plot of the stalled City of London skyscraper scheme.
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British Land confirms £1.5bn raft of London schemes
Developer British Land has announced plans to push ahead with £1.5 billion worth of projects in the capital
The programme includes the restarting of Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners’ (RSHP) £170 million ‘Cheesegrater’ tower in the City and a joint venture with Blackstone for the 65,032m² redevelopment of the Broadgate Estate - a £340 million headquarters building for Swiss bank UBS which is being designed by Make.
Construction of the Cheesegrater will begin in July 2011, the company has said, with practical completion to shell and core to be finished by the second quarter of 2014.
The £224 million, 46,450m² redevelopment of British Land’s Regent’s Place estate has also begun and scheduled for completion in the second quarter of 2013.
Meanwhile the company has said it plans to build more than 79,000m² of retail space as values recover.
The update came as the group reported underlying profit of £127 million for the last six months, and a rise in the value of the company’s portfolio of 4.2 per cent, to £4.33 billion.
The group said it had committed to the programme in the last six months. Two-thirds of the figure will be paid for directly by British Land, while it also includes the aggregate value of developments the firm is involved in.
According to the Daily Mail, British Land’s chief executive Chris Grigg is not impressed with the ‘Cheesegrater’ nickname for the RSHP-designed City skyscraper. He told the paper: ‘We are not massive fans [of the name]. We think it will be a stunning piece of British architecture, so to call it a Cheesegrater is very disappointing.’