Press releases

Legal & General submits planning application for St George's House in Croydon.

11 December 2012

Legal & General Property (LGP) has today submitted a planning application for the refurbishment of St George’s House, Park Lane in East Croydon.  This follows a public consultation process, including a public exhibition, held in September, at which 90% of written responses were positive about the proposals. The proposed scheme aims to create a unique, high quality residential address and an enhanced public realm in Croydon town centre.

The proposed change the current use of St George’s House from predominantly office floor space to residential use, with community and retail provisions at ground level, and resident roof top gardens.  It is expected to include approximately 288 new homes offering a range of unit sizes and tenure types.

The scheme is designed to add interest and variety to the Croydon skyline by introducing a ‘stepping’ effect to vary the height of the existing buildings. The designs have continued to evolve since it was first announced and staggered balconies have been introduced across the east and west facades.  All apartments will have a balcony and access to the rooftop garden space.  A sustainable, combined heat and power unit will be used to produce hot water and energy.

The refurbishment of St George’s House will rejuvenate the building and provide a sophisticated living and retail space in a key location for commuters, families and young professionals. The proposals have been developed to complement and enhance the existing qualities of the Borough, and will contribute to the regeneration of East Croydon and Croydon town centre as a whole, enhancing its position as a desirable residential location.   

Charlie Walker, Director at Legal & General Property, said: ”Since first unveiling our plans and engaging in public consultation, we have worked hard, together with our architects and planning team, to ensure that the finalised proposals best meet the needs of the town centre. Through these carefully designed plans, we believe that we can give this building an exciting new lease of life and play our part in bringing about the wider regeneration of Croydon town centre.”

Simon Wilkes, Head of Business Space Development at Legal & General Property, added: “The proposals for St George’s House are designed to bring much needed high quality residential accommodation to the centre of Croydon. The investment will also see a significant improvement in the public realm to create a more accessible and attractive civic space for residents and visitors to enjoy.”

EPR Architects and landscape architect, Charles Funke, were selected for the project by LGP to deliver a new iconic feature for Croydon’s skyline and a quality of environment for both residents and visitors. The aim for the new public realm is to narrow the traffic intensive ‘street scene’ by using a combination of mature green elements and hard surfaces. Consideration will also be given to the use of paving to establish continuity within the public realm.   

LGP’s acquisition of St George’s House forms part of a suite of deals that the Company negotiated on behalf of its UK Property Income Fund at the end of last year, enabling Nestlé’s smooth transition to new Grade A office Headquarters at 1 City Place in Gatwick.  Completed in quick succession of each other, these deals included the purchase of 1 City Place from RREEF for £39 million, the surrender of BT’s lease on the property and simultaneous agreement of a new 20-year lease with Nestlé.

The UK PIF reached its final close in October 2011, having secured commitments totalling £300 million from 14 major international institutional investors based in the Middle East, Denmark, UK, France, Finland, Switzerland and Japan.  The closed ended fund has an innovative structure which allows investors to choose their preferred level of gearing of between 0% and 50% Loan to Value (LTV), thereby offering a unique solution to accommodate a range of risk appetites.  The Fund aims to provide investors with returns of 15% (geared) and 10% (ungeared) through careful stock selection of large lot size assets which will be positioned to capitalise on the economic recovery in the UK based on a core/core-plus risk strategy.

Notes to editors

Legal & General Property (LGP) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM), one of Europe’s largest institutional asset managers and a major global investor. LGIM manages approximately £391bn of assets on behalf of more than 3,300 clients (30 September 2012) and provides products and solutions spanning all asset classes. LGP is the third largest institutional property fund manager in the UK, managing or co-managing 16 separate funds or vehicles and two segregated mandates with an aggregate asset value of £10.4bn as at 30 September 2012. 

These funds include:

Specialist Pooled Funds
The Leisure Fund Limited Partnership; Industrial Property Investment Fund; Arlington Business Parks Partnership; and the English Cities Fund

Single Asset Vehicles
Bracknell Regeneration Partnership; Central Saint Giles Partnership; Performance Retail Limited Partnership and Warrington Retail Limited Partnership

Balanced Funds
Life Fund; Linked Pensions; Linked Life; Managed Fund; Property Unit Trust; UK Property Income Fund; LPI Income Property Fund and the Hybrid Property Fund

LGP’s UK-focused fund management platform has built and retained a strong track record of out-performance across the sector. Owing to its size, diversity and penetration, it benefits from best in class banking and property industry contacts which, along with its wealth of in-house skill and expertise, have enabled it to continue to attract and secure high quality market opportunities. Taking a client-centric approach, the business places the highest priority upon integrity and transparency, leveraging upon the significant resources provided by the wider LGIM platform. Sector specialists cover each sphere of the market and are supported by LGP’s market-leading research capability.

LGP’s sector specialisms cross all facets of the real estate market. In particular, the Company has a major development platform, responsible for delivering the West End office market’s latest landmark, Central Saint Giles, and currently involved in developing its high profile Covent Garden scheme, Agar Street, as well as significant town-centre retail and leisure regeneration projects, including Bracknell, Trowbridge, Northampton and Eastbourne.

For more information please contact:

Olivia Goodall
PR Manager, Legal & General Capital and Real Assets, LGIM (Property, infrastructure and alternative finance)

t: + 44 (0) 203 124 2777
m: + 44 (0) 7718 395 279

About Legal & General

Legal & General Property Limited.

Registered address:
One Coleman Street
London EC2R 5AA.