$2B Urban Rejuvenation Project in London Under Development

The construction of One The Elephant, a 284-unit multibillion-dollar residential development designed by Squire and Partners, has finally kicked off in London.

One The Elephant

Major milestones have been reached in the $2.32billion (£1.5 billion) Elephant & Castle urban rejuvenation project lead by the London Borough of Southwark Council and its commercial partner, Australian infrastructure and property group Lend Lease.

One of the most important moments in the multibillion-dollar rejuvenation project was the official kick-off for the construction of One The Elephant, a 284-unit residential development designed by Squire and Partners. The project is composed of a 37-storey 254-unit residential tower and a four-story 30-unit pavilion on the site formerly known as St. Mary’s Residential. Upon completion, the project will feature 284 studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom units, outfitted with sustainable technologies and materials that make residences 30 percent more energy and water efficient than the average. The project is designed to reach a Level 4 Code for Sustainable Homes designation. Interior designs are signed by Tara Bernerd & Partners. Amenities include 24-hour concierge, green roof for growing produce, a residents’ reading garden linking the tower and the pavilion complete with a play area for children under the age of 5, a large function room complete with cooking and washroom facilities available for hire for residents, generous bicycle parking as well as car parking with electric car charging ports.  Street-level space at the pavilion will accommodate retail and business space for restaurants, cafes and local shops. The project will be move-in ready by December 2015.

A new $31 million (£20 million) leisure center will rise adjacent to One The Elephant. Set for a spring 2015 completion, the new structure will replace a now defunct similarly purposed structure. Accessible to the entire community, the center will offer an 82-foot six-lane swimming pool as well as a learner pool, gym, four-court sports hall, two exercise studios, indoor cycle studio, community café and daycare. Community parks and green spaces will abound all around.  Construction of the center is funded by Southwark Council.

Another milestone for the Elephant & Castle redevelopment was reached by announcing Mace and Essential Living as the developers of the Newington Butts site, another major component of the project. This phase marks the development of the first large-scale institutionally-backed residential project in the United Kingdom – the initiative secured institutional backing via M3 Capital Partners working with Essential Living in its predevelopment stage. The project will be developed on land owned by the Greater London Authority and at 44 stories tall and comprising 462 units it will be the largest private rental development in the UK.

Of its 462 units 188 residences will be affordable, 75 percent of the market-rate units will be available for long-term private rent. The development will boast private management. Amenities include a seven-story terrace.  Peabody has been designated as the affordable housing partner. Of the 188 non-market rate units 159 will have shared ownership, while 29 will be rental units.

Design is signed by Rogers Stirk and Harbour Architects and is set to resemble longer-term rental developments in large U.S. cities. The project is set to have more than $155 million (£100 million) price tag. Groundbreaking is set for early 2014 with a 2017 delivery date.

Trafalgar Place, a 235-unit development rising on the site of the former Heygate Estates has also started construction.

The 23-acre Elephant & Castle is a master-planned urban rejuvenation program which is set to create 5,000 new and replacement residences, 450,000 square feet of retail, community, restaurant and entertainment space, as well as 70 acres of green and park space over the next 15 years. Click here for our previous coverage of the project.