Grosvenor to upgrade regional office portfolio in £35m investment

Canada House

Grosvenor, the Chester-based property group which owns the Liverpool One retail centre, has begun a £35m programme to transform its regional office portfolio into low carbon workspaces.

Built up over the past two years, Grosvenor’s 500,000 sq ft regional office portfolio comprises seven offices in Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol and Leeds.

Grosvenor is now repositioning them to provide best in class occupier experience and significantly enhanced environmental performance.

The most extensive refurbishment is happening at 134 Edmund Street in Birmingham. The year-long programme of works includes upgrading the building’s heating and cooling system, a new arrival experience, business lounge for occupiers and their guests, café, gym, communal terrace and enhanced end of journey facilities.

By creating prime office space from existing buildings, the intention is to minimise both operational and embodied carbon emissions. In line with Grosvenor’s carbon reduction commitments, a key element of the refurbishment push is to reduce operational energy use, with a minimum benchmark of 4.5* NABERS set for each building.

Grosvenor has pioneered the use of NABERS, securing the first rating for an existing building in the UK for Toronto Square in Leeds.

Devised to bridge the performance gap between the design and in-use energy performance of offices, it uses metered energy consumption data to recommend energy efficiency improvements.

To further reduce onsite energy use, Grosvenor is using Demand Logic. This technology platform helps building owners and occupiers reduce energy consumption and costs by providing live data on the building’s energy usage, improving occupant wellbeing and increasing maintenance effectiveness.

In 2022, Grosvenor invested in Demand Logic as part of its £65m push to invest capital in European proptech start-ups that support its environmental, social and commercial goals.

The regional office strategy is led by the investment team in Grosvenor’s UK property business, which also manages Liverpool One, the 42-acre retail and entertainment destination and the recently launched residential debt strategy.

Grosvenor owns several sites in Manchester, including The Hive, Ship Canal House, and Canada House. In Bristol its interests include 1 Victoria Street and Prudential Buildings, in Leeds it owns Toronto Square, while in Birmingham it owns 134 Edmund Street.

Nathalie Hakim, investment director, Grosvenor, said: “Across the UK’s leading regional markets there is high demand and limited supply of prime office stock with first class amenities and strong environmental performance.

“As a business with extensive experience of retrofitting buildings and active asset management, we’re well placed to meet what we anticipate will be a growing demand for a market leading office product with low operational and embodied carbon.”

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