Property developer British Land unveils major new London offices proposal

Property giant British Land has demonstrated a vote of confidence in London offices, by unveiling plans for a major new project in the City.

The FTSE 100 property developer, led by Chris Grigg, has published plans for some 700,000 square feet of offices at 2 Finsbury Avenue, which sits on its Broadgate complex that comprises shops, restaurants and offices by Liverpool Street station.

It has gone out to public consultation on the proposals, ahead of a planning submission in the Autumn.

The project comprises a 35-storey block and a 20-storey one.

The development is being designed by Danish architects 3XN, its first project in London.

In line with British Land’s sustainability strategy, the building will target net zero carbon in construction and operation.

The plans come despite some industry concerns about future office demand in the capital. Numerous companies have had people working from home since the Covid-19 lockdown started.

In British Land’s full-year results in May, Grigg said: “In offices, occupiers are working on plans to get back to the workplace and most feel that it is too early to make fundamental long term changes around their requirements. However, we are mindful that the trend towards greater flexibility may accelerate following this prolonged period of working from home.”

He added: “At the same time, there will be a greater focus on high quality, modern and safe environments, which provide more space per person and we expect the trend towards higher density offices and hot desking to reverse.”