Abu Dhabi-backed Carlyle gets nod for London project

Carlyle Group, the US private equity firm in which Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Development Company owns a 7.5 percent stake, has been given the green light for a major central London real estate project.

In a statement, Carlyle said that Southwark Council’s Strategic Planning Committee has approved an application to develop a 1.4m sqft residential and office regeneration project along the UK capital’s South Bank.

The development will include 490 new homes and create 3,700 jobs, Carlyle said, as well as include portions of office, retail and cultural space. It will replace the existing Sampson House data centre and Ludgate House office building.

Carlyle said the project will comprise of nine new buildings, including a 48-storey residential tower. The development has been designed by PLP Architecture and will be delivered in multiple phases between mid 2020 and 2023, following the expiries of tenants’ leases at Sampson House and Ludgate House in 2018 and 2015, respectively.

“Our vision of an exciting new urban quarter on this prime Thames-side location has taken a significant step towards realisation with the council’s decision to provide planning consent for our project,” commented Mark Harris, managing director, the Carlyle Group

“The site, which is right on the river, is currently extremely under-utilised from a physical, social, employment as well as cultural perspective and the support we have received from the local community and Southwark Council throughout this process, and last night, endorses our belief in the need for change. 

“This is a once in a generation opportunity to create a vibrant new destination area, with homes, retail and leisure facilities which brings thousands of new jobs to the area, while at the same time allowing us to make a significant contribution to Southwark’s wider housing requirements.”

Carlyle Group has not placed a value on the project, but said that the London Borough of Southwark, the Greater London Authority and Transport for London would benefit from a £75m ($120m) Section 106 investment as a result of the development. This includes a £65m affordable housing contribution, equivalent to the policy requirement for 35 percent of affordable homes.

UAE investment vehicle Mubadala took a 7.5 percent stake in the Carlyle Group in a $1.35bn deal in 2007, at the time pledging $500m to an investment fund managed by the private equity firm.

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