Good quality, affordable sites to build new homes in London remain hard to come by, in spite of the drop in prices for residential in some parts of the capital in the past few years. But housebuilders are increasingly finding a solution: unloved retail assets.
London and the UK need more homes and less retail. It seems the market has reached the position where existing retail assets are priced at a level that make them suitable to be either demolished or converted into much-needed residential units. The process would be slow and complicated, but ultimately it could remove assets that are no longer needed by the public, and replace them with ones that are.
“A good source of supply is distressed retail,” Barratt Developments Land and Planning Director Philip Barnes told the audience at Bisnow’s London Residential & Affordable Housing Review. “We are building on an old Homebase in Acton, and last week we exchanged contracts on a similar type of scheme in East London.”
Barratt plans to build 364 new homes, 35% of which will be affordable, and a new 25K SF supermarket in the Acton scheme. The 2.4-acre site previously housed a 35K SF Homebase retail warehouse, which the housebuilder bought from a fund managed by CBRE Global…
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