Landsec plans to invest £400m in MediaCity in the medium term. Credit: via Carousel

Landsec readies plans for 330,000 sq ft MediaCity office

The developer is plotting a £110m investment at the Salford media complex, its first major intervention since acquiring a 75% stake in the scheme for £426m last year. 

A planning application for a 330,000 sq ft office at MediaCity is expected this summer, according to Landsec. 

The scheme, being designed by Sheppard Robson, would be constructed on a site that currently has consent for a 100,000 sq ft office. 

Plans for the earlier, five-storey iteration – drawn up by Chapman Taylor – were approved in 2016. NJL Consulting is retained as the planning consultant for the updated project. 

Landsec plans to invest up to £110m in the revised scheme, reflecting a yield on cost of 7.5%.  

This forms part of a £400m investment strategy at MediaCity in the medium term. 

Subject to planning approval, work on the MediaCity scheme could start in the second quarter of 2023. 

Chief executive Mark Allan told Place North West the project demonstrates Landsec’s “confidence in and commitment to” MediaCity. 

“There has been relatively little new commercial development for some time but the need and demand for commercial space is and will be strong,” Allan said. 

An earlier iteration of the project was approved in 2016. Credit: via planning documents

“We are working with Peel and Salford City Council to look at what the right plans [for MediaCity] are. The current masterplan is out of date.” 

Landsec bought a majority stake in MediaCity last year for £425.6m. The company acquired Legal & General’s 50% stake and half of Peel L&P’s 50% stake. Peel retains a 25% holding. 

Stephen Wild, managing director at MediaCity said: “We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Landsec and look forward to delivering the next phase of new buildings to MediaCity.”

Landsec envisages submitting a revised outline planning application for the remainder of the site later this year, according to a statement accompanying the firm’s end of year financial results. 

The company reported a pre-tax profit of £875m for the year ended 31 March 2022, recovering from a £1.3bn loss year-on-year. 

“Landsec has delivered strong operational and financial results despite the turbulence within the UK economy,” Allan said. 

“The actions we have taken, driven by our strategic focus on three distinct areas have resulted in record leasing in our London office portfolio, a return to growth in our major retail destinations and clear, substantive progress in growing our mixed-use urban neighbourhood portfolio.   

He added: “Landsec is in a strong position, financially and operationally, and we expect delivering on our strategy to drive material growth in income and, on average, a mid to high single-digit annual return on equity over time.  

“With the expertise we have within the business and the momentum built, I am confident that we are on the right path and will be able to navigate the wider macro uncertainties facing the economy today.” 

Elsewhere in the North West, Landsec today reiterated its intention to start construction of the first phase – 316,000 sq ft of offices – at Mayfield in Manchester “late this year”. 

Landsec acquired developer U+I for £190m last year, thus taking a 50% stake in Mayfield. The other 50% is held by Manchester City Council, Transport for Greater Manchester and LCR.

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Huge!!! A city in itself this place

By Bob

Media City and Mayfield. They clearly have a lot of confidence in the Manchester office market because there are an awful lot of them now around the city centre. Hope they read PNW article last week on differentiating those businesses districts.

By Anonymous

Whenever BBC run anything outdoors at the studio at Salford the place comes across as very grey, quiet and pretty soulless. More activity can only help.

By Clap

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