Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Kent has a strong story to tell at MIPIM

With Kent’s key players in its commercial property industry flying the flag for the county down at MIPIM, Europe’s largest real estate annual exhibition, it would appear there’s a compelling story to tell.

Peel Land and Property is looking for investors and construction partners to help it build the 1,000 residential unit scheme on Chatham Waters. The former dockyard is set to be transformed under Peel’s £650 million development plans, which will create 3,500 jobs, and also include 430,000ft2 of offices and a hotel.

Medway Council has also appointed Countryside Properties to deliver Rochester Riverside, a £400 million contract to develop 1,300 homes at the riverside location over the next 12 years.

The Essex-based developer, which has offices in Sevenoaks, will transform the 74 acre brownfield site next to the River Medway, with plans including the delivery of a new school, nursery, hotels, restaurants, gym and office space.

A member of Kent Developers Group, Pentland Homes has secured detailed planning consent for a mixed-use development in Hawkinge, consisting of 32,000ft2 of commercial use including offices and light industrial starter units, alongside 39 houses and eight flats. Pentland worked with Clague, the Canterbury-based architect. 

There might be progress on the former Aylesford Newsprint site, as property consultancy Lambert Smith Hampton has revealed a number of options for the future. Acting on behalf of administrators KPMG, the consultants are looking at options for keeping the area in commercial use or for industrial use, or a mix of commercial property and housing close to the M20. 

There’s also a compelling life science-based story to tell for Locate in Kent, the investment promotion agency for the county.

Kent Science Park, near Sittingbourne, has been sold to a US private equity company, Angelo Gordon, which manages around £18.7 billion of assets. They bought the site in a joint venture with UK property company Trinity Investment Management.

With Discovery Park and the North Kent Innovation Zone, which includes Kent Medical Campus, the county now has two enterprise zones with incentives for business.

Finally, Cygnet Healthcare, one of the UK's largest independent providers of specialist mental health services, has unveiled plans to develop a high quality, purpose-built hospital at Kent Medical Campus, investing more than £18 million in the county town at Junction 7 of the M20.

The Kent delegation will be returning from MIPIM later this week and I’m sure there’ll be yet more good news to report as UK and overseas investors recognise the commercial attractiveness of the county.

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