Barings Real Estate Advisers, one of the world’s largest diversified real estate investment managers, has announced that it has acquired and committed to speculatively develop Landmark Manchester, a 180,000 sq ft office development with a GDV of c£100 million, in the heart of Manchester, on behalf of an institutional investor, as it seeks to capitalise on the strong levels of demand for new Grade A space in the city.  Castlebrooke, who originally acquired the site in 2015, will continue to act as Development Manager for Barings Real Estate Advisers.  Colliers advised the vendor and  been appointed as joint letting agents with CBRE. Bowmer & Kirkland has been appointed as contractor and will start on site imminently. 

Due to be delivered in the first half of 2019, this fully consented Grade A scheme has been designed to set a new standard in office accommodation for Manchester, delivering modern, flexible and highly efficient work space.  It includes a double-height reception area at ground level together with 13 further floors of prime city centre space.  Once complete the property will have an Excellent BREEAM rating.

Landmark Manchester will form part of the cluster of prime buildings in Manchester alongside 1 & 2 St Peter’s Square.  The scheme is less than 50 metres from St Peter’s Square and its Metrolink stop, which is in the centre of the city’s extensive tram network, as well as being within a 15 minute walk of all four of Manchester’s mainline railway stations.  

The development is the final piece of Manchester City Council’s vision to create one of Europe’s finest Civic Quarters with high quality buildings, transport infrastructure, open space and amenities.

Darren Hutchinson, Senior Director at Barings Real Estate Advisers, said: “The shortage of new Grade A office supply in Manchester coupled with the healthy demand dynamic from national and international occupiers for space in the city gives us the confidence to proceed with this major project ahead of securing a pre-let.  We have assembled a first class team to deliver this project to the highest standards and are excited by the opportunity to deliver a best in class, next generation office building in Manchester City Centre.”

Nick Pink, Head of Fund Management Europe at Barings Real Estate Advisers, said “We remain selective buyers in the UK where we can identify opportunities in markets and sectors that demonstrate the right mix of cyclical and structural performance characteristics.  We continue to look for opportunities such as Manchester across Europe to supplement our other major projects in Berlin and London.”

Sir Howard Bernstein, Chief Executive of Manchester City Council, commented: “We are delighted to welcome Barings Real Estate Advisers' investment into this key site in the city's Civic Quarter and the jobs it will generate. Our investment in St Peter's Square and the transformation of Central Library and the Town Hall extension has created a world class office environment, complemented by proximity to our universities, which is attracting quality occupiers. We look forward to working closely with Barings Real Estate Advisers to help deliver a successful project for the city."

Barings Real Estate Advisers is one of the world’s largest diversified real estate investment managers. Part of Barings LLC, the group is an active investor in private and public, equity and debt markets, and provides core, value-added, and opportunistic investment and advisory services to institutional and other qualified investors around the globe.