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First Phase of Exchange Square gets planning and funding

Planning consent been granted for the first phase of Exchange Square in Birmingham’s Eastside, which will enable Nikal to commence delivery of 603 apartments across three blocks of 27, 16 and 9 storeys, 27,500 sq ft of ground floor retail and leisure and 186 car parking spaces.

The development will be funded through a deal worth in excess of £100m with LaSalle Investment Management to acquire the long leasehold interest in the residential units for build to rent apartments on behalf of a client

Occupying a prominent plot close to the proposed HS2 city centre terminus, Exchange Square will represent a significant boost for the city’s residential market, offering a range of one and two e bedroom units, alongside a small number of studios.

Nick Payne, Managing Director at Nikal, said: “We are delighted to be working with such an established and well respected investment manager.  Now that planning consent has been secured we are in a position to bring forward the first phase of what we are sure will be a transformational development for the area and one that will be an exemplar scheme for Birmingham’s residential market.

“With its prime location and on-site ancillary services, we are anticipating significant rental interest from a wide range of professionals, underpinned by the city’s growing financial services sector. With the funding and planning consent both in place we are looking to appoint our contractor imminently.”

Situated between the city’s central business district and Eastside City Park – and adjacent to Nikal’s award-winning Hive development – Exchange Square will benefit significantly from the anticipated delivery of the Curzon Street HS2 station and associated investment in the area.

Richard Debney, Regional Director, LaSalle Investment Management, said: “Exchange Square will be the first build to rent scheme of its size in Birmingham, which has enjoyed a very strong residential letting market of late with a shortage of high quality apartments. We believe the urban village concept at Exchange Square will not only create a critical mass of apartments with attractive community facilities, but bring a unique proposition to the Birmingham market that we are confident will prove popular with young professionals seeking high quality city centre accommodation.”

Designed by twice Sterling Prize-shortlisted architectural practice, Stephenson Studio, the scheme includes a 5,000 sq ft members’ club-style hub that will contain a number of services for residents, including a concierge and access to a private lounge. This will spill out onto an extensive, beautifully landscaped rooftop garden covering over 20,000 sq ft, for the exclusive use of residents.

Nikal has an existing outline planning consent in place for the delivery of up to 1,000 residential units on the site, with a detailed planning application for a second phase of development, including additional residential buildings and a new public square, due to be determined by Birmingham City Council in May .

Nikal has extensive experience in the Birmingham residential market, having already delivered over 340 units at Masshouse, with all 167 apartments at Hive – which was named Best UK High Rise Development at the 2011 UK Property Awards – purchased within two years of opening.