The telecommunications giant has signed a 20-year lease on the whole of English Cities Fund’s planned 10-storey Four New Bailey in Salford, in the biggest office letting in the North West this year.
BT was originally looking for 200,000 sq ft at Four New Bailey, designed by Make Architects, but scaled back its requirement to 175,000 sq ft on Covid.
Subsequently, developer ECF submitted a revised application in September, skimming two storeys off its original plans for a 12-storey building, in response to BT’s reassessment of its requirements across the country.
Four New Bailey is to be the latest office building at ECF’s mixed-use New Bailey scheme.
While BT’s Salford deal has survived the market uncertainty of the pandemic, the firm’s additional searches for office space in Liverpool and Sheffield have been put on hold for the foreseeable future, Place North West revealed last week.
Phil Mayall, regional director of English Cities Fund, said: “This announcement has been many months in the making and we’ve been busy behind the scenes making sure that Four New Bailey will address BT’s needs, while also becoming one of the most visually striking commercial developments in the city.
“This letting is a significant mark of confidence in what we’re achieving here at New Bailey and we’re positive for the future as we continue to bring life, diversity and culture into this area of the city.”
Having signed the lease, BT plans to move staff into the New Bailey office from late 2023. Work is expected to start on site at Four New Bailey later in the year.
Graeme Paton, BT’s managing director of property and facilities services, said: “Our new building will bring our people together in an impressive and modern environment, transforming the way we work.”
Chris Mulcahy, director at agency JLL, which acted on behalf of BT, said: “This is a real confidence boost for the city, for jobs and the office market generally, from such a major occupier committing to so much space. It is great news to get this over the line particularly at this time.
“This letting will be one of the largest office deals done this year in the regions.”
Cushman and Wakefield and JLL are the joint lettings agents on New Bailey.
The ECF consortium comprises Muse Developments, Legal & General and Homes England.