Station Hill, Reading acquired

Posted on by John Cronin

A large-scale development in Thames Valley has been acquired by a US private equity investor.

US investors Benson Elliot Capital Management and UK property developers Stanhope plc have acquired a majority interest in the Station Hill redevelopment in Reading, Berkshire. The redevelopment of the site next to Reading station was previously controlled by John Madejski, the property and publishing entrepreneur, via his Sackville Properties company. It is believed that the scheme had breached banking covenants and has been sold for less than the outstanding debt value.

station hillStation Hill (pictured) is one of the largest commercial developments in the UK with an expected development cost in excess of £400m. The 1.72m sq ft, mixed-use speculative development will include over 860,000 sq ft of office floor space along with retail units, residential accommodation and leisure areas.

Construction for the 5.1acre site has been timetabled to commence in 2011 with a target, first phase completion date of 2014.

The development, designed by architects Scott BrownRigg and Chapman Taylor, will include 3 multi-storey office buildings, the tallest standing at 26 floors. The smallest office block will offer approximately 200,000 sq ft of floor space and the largest offering 320,000 sq ft. Floor plates will range in size from 8,000 sq ft up to 14,000 sq ft. The building design is expected to result in a BREEAM rating of ‘Excellent’. The design of the scheme has not been without criticism, with CABE expressing concerns over the height of the tall office towers.

Full planning documentation is available on the Reading Borough Council website.

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