Great Portland Estates has acquired a 2.3 acre freehold site in the core of London’s West End, paving the way for it to start on a major mixed use redevelopment in 2013.
The developer announced this morning that it had exchanged contracts on the site between Rathbone Place and Newman Street, 50 yards north of Oxford Street.
It acquired the site from Royal Mail Group for £120m in cash.
RMG will lease back the site until June 2013, after which the developer will take possession and start building work.
In May 2011, RMG submitted a planning application for approximately 383,435 sq ft of net area including offices, residential, retail and substantial public realm improvements, together with a new public street connecting Newman Street through to Rathbone Place and Charlotte Street.
GPE will withdraw the current planning application and will begin work on a new proposal for the site, expecting to submit a new application during 2012.
GPE chief executive Toby Courtauld said: “We are delighted to have added this important West End site to our medium term development pipeline.
“Its redevelopment will accelerate the regeneration of the East End of Oxford Street, one of London’s most exciting submarkets, which is set to benefit significantly from the opening of Crossrail.
“We look forward to working closely with both Royal Mail Group and Westminster City Council to maximise the benefit the site can bring to this part of the capital.”