BL colonises Canada Water

BL-Surrey-Quays-site-plan-2-570British Land has bought a key £130m piece to unlock a 45-acre jigsaw of sites in Canada Water, SE16.

The REIT has exchanged contracts with Aviva Investors to buy the 8.4-acre Surrey Quays leisure park.

The site is sandwiched between British Land’s Surrey Quays shopping centre and Harmsworth Quays – site of the former Daily Mail and Evening Standard printworks.

It is expected to unlock a major redevelopment in the area, which is the subject of ­multiple plans for thousands of new homes, a university campus, offices and shops.

At 45 acres, the combined site is one of the largest in London. By comparison, Canary Wharf’s nearby Wood Wharf scheme totals 33.6 acres.

Surrey Quays leisure park comprises a cinema, bowling alley, bingo hall and restaurants.

Outline planning was secured in 2010 for 630 homes and 54,000 sq ft of offices at the site.

British Land said last June that it would consider redeveloping both the printworks and Surrey Quays shopping centre as part of the same Allies & Morrison-designed masterplan.

Initial proposals for  the shopping centre included a 107,000 sq ft extension, while a mixed-use scheme was mooted for the old printworks.


In addition, King’s College London has secured an option agreement on the Mulberry business park site to the north of Harmsworth Quays, where it plans to build a new campus.

BL and Southwark council, which owns the freehold of the site, are working with the university to develop a masterplan.

James Sellar’s Sellar Design and Development owns another site between Mulberry business park and Surrey Quays shopping centre. It has agreed a deal with Notting Hill Housing to create a 1.5m sq ft residential-led scheme.

Residential values in the area are more than £650 per sq ft.

One local estate agent said: “On the map this is a  Zone 2 postcode. While we do not predict a value explosion, prices in the area will continue to grow gradually and constantly as a result of the regeneration.”

Mount Anvil was the underbidder for the leisure centre.