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One of the UK’s largest real estate investment trusts (REIT) has stated that in the first half of this year it has continued to make progress in office lettings across development projects.
Despite the sluggish recovery of the economy and the unemployment rate remaining high, Land Securities is continuing to invest in development in the UK.
The REIT is putting its confidence in the retail and commercial space sector by investing large sums in developing these areas.
Of the investment in retail and commercial space Francis Salway, Chief executive of Land Securities, said: “We’re responding to growing demand from food and fashion retailers. Retailers are planning two to three years out; the stronger retailers got their balance sheets into good shape. We wouldn’t be doing these developments on a wholly speculative basis.
“We are alive to the challenges in the retail sector but the important thing is we’re doing business with the retailers who are taking more space, and our portfolio tends to be in the stronger locations.”
Recently the REIT announced in its quarterly interim management statement that it had started construction on two sites in Central London which will eventually offer up 375,000 square feet of space.
It also said that currently it has approximately GBP 275 million of small retail projects in its development pipeline.
Land Securities currently has over 29,000,000 square feet of commercial property in its portfolio. Much of this comprises central London office space and high street shops. Its property portfolio is currently valued at approximately GBP eight billion.
The main rival to Land Securities is REIT British Land, which has a property portfolio currently valued at GBP 4.1 billion.