- Planetary alignment peaks with celestial show this weekend
- UK fighters escort Pakistan plane to airport, two arrests
- Judge rules against 'America's toughest sheriff' in racial profiling lawsuit
- Sixth night of violence in Sweden, but police say capital calmer |
- Justice Department defends journalist email search
Homes for sale: neighbours include Barclays and Morgan Stanley
LONDON, Sept 14 |
LONDON, Sept 14 (Reuters) - Canary Wharf Group is considering the construction of the first block of apartments on the east London financial estate of the same name, underlining how an area dominated by bank-branded skyscrapers is betting on a more eclectic future.
The planned location is a site called Newfoundland in the west of the estate, not far from office blocks occupied by banks including Morgan Stanley and Barclays.
It echoes a trend in London's main City financial district and in the West End, where developers are increasingly betting on more valuable residential schemes over offices to meet strong demand from overseas buyers seeking to park their money in London property.
Banks are also retrenching in the wake of the financial crisis and are increasingly looking at cheaper options for offices. Bank of America for instance is weighing up plans to move back-office staff away from Canary Wharf into cheaper offices in the north of England, Reuters reported last month.
"It's a possibility at the moment but it would give the area a different sort of flavour" said John Garwood, company secretary at Songbird Estates, majority owner of Canary Wharf Group, on a conference call with journalists.
The 97-acre Canary Wharf district in east London began luring major banks after it was created in the early 1990s, with the promise of cheaper rents, larger trading floors and better-appointed offices.
Construction of homes on the site would also fit within wider plans the company has for a 17-acre site adjacent to Canary Wharf called Wood Wharf, that it plans to develop over the next 10 to 12 years.
It announced the appointment of architect Terry Farrell - known for London landmarks such as the riverside headquarters of Britain's secret intelligence service - on Friday to design the Wood Wharf scheme.
This latter plan envisages about 3,000 homes covering double the floor space than envisaged under an earlier design and over 2 million square feet of offices that will be lower-rise than the main estate and will target media and technology companies.
"With the huge success of the Olympics ... this part of London is now much more than a global financial centre," Farrell said.
- Tweet this
- Share this
- Digg this