Work starts on £52m office development at Thorpe Park Leeds

Work starts on £52m office development at Thorpe Park Leeds

Scarborough Group International has commenced works on site to deliver a significant exemplary office building at our Thorpe Park Leeds project.  The 133,118 sq ft building, which is pre-let to leading credit management company, Lowell, sets a new benchmark in workplace design at the park and has a gross development value of £52 million.

Representatives from both Scarborough Group and Lowell met on site to mark the official ground-breaking with GMI Construction, principal contractor for the project, just a matter of weeks after funding was secured for the project through OakNorth Bank. GMI expects to complete the building by September 2022, ready for the tenant to commence their CAT-B fit-out works before they relocate in 2023.

The pre-let to Lowell was announced earlier this year and represents the largest single out of town office deal ever recorded in West Yorkshire and the biggest property transaction in the Northern Powerhouse region over the last twelve months. Lowell has agreed a 15-year lease to occupy the building and will relocate its UK headquarters from two sites at Leeds Valley Park.

The building, which will extend over seven floors with two levels of underground podium parking and amenity below, marks the evolution in the design of out of town office space and is being constructed in line with the very latest human health and wellbeing standards. Its location and adjacent landscaped courtyard will create an anchor point for the next development plots that will be largely pedestrianised, providing easy access to The Springs retail and leisure park and new green park.

Designed by award-winning architects, Carey Jones Chapman Tolcher, the building is to represent a new benchmark for future development at Thorpe Park Leeds, with an environmental performance target rating of BREEAM ‘Excellent’ and principles set out in the WELL Standard to provide an exemplar environment for users.

Kevin McCabe, Chairman at SGI, said: “We are pleased to be able to start on site so quickly after securing planning consent, funding and of course concluding the landmark letting with our new neighbours Lowell.  The transaction is excellent news for the region and a huge vote of confidence in the existing & future environment at Thorpe Park as well an indicator that the office market remains strong, despite the pandemic.

“We continue to engage with businesses seeking to locate at Thorpe Park Leeds, some of which are existing occupiers looking to expand, and we remain committed to our ambition to deliver further phases of office development to ensure that Thorpe Park maintains and advances its position within the Northern Powerhouse as the flagship location for business, employment and quality of life.”

Lee Powell, Divisional Managing Director of GMI Construction Group, said: “We are delighted to start on site with our next significant project at Thorpe Park Leeds as we maintain our long-term and trusted partnership with SGI to deliver phase two. The scale of delivery is considerable and as principal contractor we are excited to be working closely with the entire delivery team to build the biggest single office building in Leeds out of town history.  It really is exciting to see how Thorpe Park Leeds has excelled in recent years to become a thriving business and leisure destination and we are proud to be a part of it.”

Lisa Wragg, Head of Office Services at Lowell, said: “This building is the culmination of many months of tireless work by all involved to get it to this stage.  We’re really excited to see the construction of our new home finally starting to take shape and look forward to celebrating the next milestone in due course.”