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Interior wins fit-out in Bankside decision

CONTRACTS - LONDON

BOVIS Lend Lease looks to have missed out on the chance to complete the fit-out of a building it constructed. Rival firm InteriorExterior is now tipped for the job.

Last year Bovis beat Sir Robert McAlpine and Wembley builder Multiplex to turn the former London headquarters of the Highways Agency into a new office development.

As a result, the firm was considered favourite to get the fit-out from Land Securities but the developer appears to have opted for InteriorExterior instead.

One bidder said: 'It's looking like Interior's job, which is bound to baff le Bovis.' Three other firms ? Structuretone, Overbury and Skanska ? also pitched for the £35 million contract.

Located on the southern side of the river Thames, behind the Tate Modern art gallery, the £200 million office complex ? known as Bankside 123 ? will comprise three office blocks plus retail and leisure facilities. It will be one of the biggest off ice developments along the South Bank.

The entire site is due to be completed by autumn 2007.

The fit-out contract has been awarded for the first completed block in the complex. The remaining fit-out contracts will be awarded later in the year.

Publishing firm IPC Media will begin moving its staff into the first building in November.

The 12-storey tower will also feature underground parking, a health club and retail facilities.