UBS commits to Broadgate development

Elizabeth Fournier
INVESTMENT bank UBS committed to a future in the City yesterday, after it finalised a pre-let agreement to move into British Land’s new Broadgate development.

The deal is the final seal of approval for the £850m project, which was last year threatened by an application for listed status of the original estate by conservation group English Heritage.

City A.M. revealed that culture secretary Jeremy Hunt had decided to dismiss the application in June, after City executives and business leaders hit out at the message that blocking the development would send.

UBS will rent the entire building on an 18-year lease, paying an initial rental price of £54.50 per square foot.

British Land and its Broadgate co-owner, private equity firm Blackstone, originally won planning permission in 2011 to demolish part of the estate and rebuild a new UK headquarters for existing tenant UBS.

The property developer said yesterday construction on the 700,000 square foot building behind Liverpool Street station is expected to be finished by the fourth quarter of 2014.

Demolition of the old estate – designed by architect Peter Foggo and completed in the mid-1980s – has already begun.