Work to start at high-end Edinburgh office project amid ‘strong’ demand
● Eight-floor Capital Square site hoping to address city’s lack of suitable property
The button has been pressed on Edinburgh’s largest current speculative office development, accommodating up to 1,400 people, in the city’s Exchange business district.
BAM Properties in partnership with Hermes Investment Management is set to develop Capital Square, a high-end 122,000 square foot, eightfloor purpose-built office development with an underground car park, and located between Morrison Street and Lothian Road, near the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa and office building Atria One – home to organisations including the Green Investment Bank and PWC.
BAM Construction has been appointed to build the development, with work due to start this month and the development expected to be ready for occupancy in early 2020.
Hermes Investment Management, in association with Parlison Properties, secured planning approval for the venture in 2015 and the latter firm will continue as development consultant to the project.
Designed by architects Hurd Rolland, the building will include a double-height reception with a “statement” atrium, and a courtyard entrance, set in a private south-facing landscaped garden, while the property will also have rooftop terraces. The grade A development will also meet the “highest” environmental standards, BAM Properties said.
The firm’s managing director Dougie Peters said it believes the market is currently ready for investment. “We believe now is the time. We are confident in the Edinburgh office market and the Edinburgh economy generally. The city continues to suffer from a lack of Grade A supply with strong demand from occupiers for new space.”
He also said the development “will provide a competitive edge as Edinburgh lacks high-calibre developments of this scale capable of attracting blue-chip occupiers”.
It comes after commercial property consultancy JLL Scotland earlier this week forecast that Edinburgh’s office market was set for a record-breaking year, with well over a million square feet of space set to be taken up by companies and organisations.
The city’s strong appeal to global firms has seen demand for grade A commercial property soar, and suitable supply dwindle.
Chris Taylor, head of private markets at £30.1 billion manager Hermes Investment Management, said Capital Square “offers an attractive proposition as it meets ongoing strong occupier demand for highquality, central office space close to key transport connections and amenities”.