The Weekly Wrap
City of London property investment shatters approaching Brexit
Early 2019 investment levels in the City of London and the
West End have dried as uncertainty around the UK’s exit from the European Union
begins to dent the deal flow.
Last year London was the most popular city in the world for
deal making, but with little clarity over the terms of Brexit, investors have
put their transactions on hold.
In January, only two deals completed in the West End, which
is the lowest number of monthly transactions on record. The deal value has been marked as third worst
January on record at £130m, behind 2009 and 2010.
Meanwhile, four deals completed in the City totalling
£111.25m, which is a 75% decrease when compared with January last year. Furthermore,
this an 80% reduction from the five year average of £500m.
One property analysts said, “The
lack of transactional activity is largely owed in part to the political
uncertainty created by the ongoing Brexit deliberations culminating in caution
from both vendors and purchasers”. And that, “whilst some groups are pausing
for thought, others are more willing to commit and so whilst transactions for
this month are subdued, the number of inspections and bidding activity remains
There is a total of £1.08bn of
property under offer at The City of London, meanwhile, in the West End there is
only £320m under offer which is “relatively little”.
City Corporation appoint Nick Collier as Brussels
Nick Collier, the head of
government relations of Refinitiv, has been appointed as a Brussels managing
director and will take over the role from March as UK leaves the EU.
The City of London Corporation has
said it will strengthen its Brussels office and that the new managing director
will be a “focal point” for building a relationship between professional and
financial services in the UK and the European Union.
Catherine McGuinness, the
Corporations policy chair said, “this is a critical time for the UK financial
and professional services sector so I’m delighted that Nick has accepted this
managing director role at our Brussels office. He brings a wealth of experience
and expertise that will play an important role in shaping the industry’s
European engagement both before and after Brexit.
“It is in the interests of Europe
as a whole that we continue to work together constructively to ensure the
sector can support jobs, investment and prosperity across the continent.”
Hilton hotel to open in the City
Hilton is scheduled to open a 145
room Curio property in the City of London in 2022. The hotel will be located
behind Creed Court, on the corner of Ludgate Hill.
It will include a ground floor restaurant
along with a bar and a barista café. The scheme will have six floors of rooms
available with views over St Paul’s Cathedral.
Hilton already has two Curio
Collection properties within the UK, at Lincoln Plaza London and The Trafalgar
St James London.
Furthermore, Dominvs Group is
developing a 120 room Hampton by Hilton London City, which is expected to open
in 2021 near Whitechapel Station in London’s Aldgate district. A spokesperson
said that “Hilton’s brands are growing rapidly in the UK, with more than 180
hotels trading or under development. We’re seeing growing consumer demand at
every price point, and these hotels will add exceptional new rooms in
prestigious urban locations.”
Fears over too many visitors at the Tulip sky scrapper
There are fears that The Tulip, the
capital’s second highest proposed site, opposite the Gherkin, will not cope
with the number of visitors.
According to reports, the council’s
public realm manager Tom Noble said, “we have serious concerns about the
capacity of the public realm to adequately manage the additional number of
people that this development will bring."
Provisions in the plans were
“unacceptable and likely lead to people walking the carriageway and
The objections come after a
Deloitte report claimed the skyscraper would boost the economy by £1bn and create
600 full time jobs.
The Tulip would host cultural,
business and technology events, and carve space for an education centre where
40,000 state school pupils a year would be able to learn about London’s
The projected plans for The Tulip
are yet to be approved or rejected, however, if it all goes well the building
is due to be completed in 2025.
New roof garden opens up in The City of London
A new mid-level roof garden named The
Garden at 120 has opened up just off Fenchurch Street. The 15-storey building
is now open to the public and it’s completely free to enjoy the views of
London. Unfortunately, One Fen Court is only 15 floors high, therefore, some
skyscrapers are in the way for 360 degrees views. Nevertheless, there are
pretty unique views of across the City.
The building was designed by Eric
Parry Architects on behalf of insurance company Generali. The design is also
very unique as if almost one building stacked on top of another.
The higher level is covered in
iridescent strips, producing a vivid colourful effect both inside and outside.
The roof garden is open from 10 am
until 6.30pm, with summer hours to be introduced from 1st April.
There is going to be two six-weekend trial periods, for which the garden is
open 10am-5pm. The 2,800 sq m roof garden has a capacity of 207 people, so if
it’s a particularly clear day, you might have to queue.
Another thing to look out for is
down at the ground level, where a spacious through-passageway to retain a
historic link between Fenchurch Street and Fenchurch Avenue. It’s from here
that you catch a lift to the roof. But before you do, look up. There’s a
digital art installation by Vong Phaophanit and Claire Oboussier on the
It aims to act as a camera obscura
bringing imagery from the garden down to the street. The best moment comes when
the image flickers onto the roof’s live-stream, trained on Tower Bridge. People
walk underneath barely noticing, but stop and stare when it grabs their
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