Here’s a story I have just revealed on the CoStar News site. Another ambitious development project moves forward in the Stratford Olympics zone.
Harry Handelsman’s Manhattan Loft Corporation has bought a site directly to the north east of the Olympic Stadium for a luxury 42-storey hotel and flats development, CoStar News can reveal.
MLC, the company credited with introducing New York-style loft living to the UK, has bought the 0.7-acre site – plot N24 within zone 3 of the 180-acre Stratford City masterplan – from Channel Tunnel Rail Link builder London & Continental Railways for an undisclosed sum
The company has been working in partnership with LCR on a SOM Architects-designed scheme comprising 248 high-rise apartments alongside a circa 150-bed hotel on the lower floors and a restaurant on the seventh floor.
The scheme, which the pair’s special purpose vehicle Stratford Heights Investments has described as the “most exciting mixed-use hotel development in Europe”, overlooks Westfield’s £1.45bn Stratford City shopping centre.
LCR and MLC want to emulate the succes of their previous joint redevelopment of the Midland Grand hotel at St Pancras, NW1 on land fronting Stratford International Station.
In December 2011, the Olympic Delivery Authority resolved to grant permission for the plans subject to completion of a section 106 agreement, which includes a £1m payment to Newham council funding between six and seven intermediate units on-site or 23 intermediate sites off-site.
LCR and Manhattan Loft Corporation both confirmed to CoStar News that MLC had now bought the site but declined to discuss the price or how the deal was structured.
The Department of Transport has confirmed Channel Tunnel Rail Link builder LCR’s future following the £2bn sale of CTRL – now called High Speed 1 – to Canadian pension funds Borealis Infrastructure and Ontario Teachers’ Pension at the end of last year.
There are two remaining parts of the business, which was set up in 1996 to build CTRL – a 40% stake in Eurostar, which could be sold, and the property arm. Since 2008 and the completion of High Speed 1 successive governments have been considering the future for the business.
David Joy, chief executive, London & Continental Railways, said that the focus for the next two to three years will be a possible Eurostar sale and creating a “clean” property business, which can then either be sold or held for the long-term purely as a property company.
CoStar News revealed last week that those talks with government include potentially adding a raft of UK transport hub sites to London & Continental Railways’ multi-billion-pound real estate portfolio as it builds a major property company for potential sale in the next three years.