Langtree is in advanced discussions with Atlantic Container Line UK to pre-sell a 40,000 sq ft office in Liverpool's Duke Street which would be built on a stalled site owned by the HCA.
A planning application for the new block designed by DLA Architecture has been submitted to Liverpool City Council.
ACL has had a long-standing requirement for a new office base in the city, home to its UK headquarters. The shipping line will purchase the building on completion. DTZ is advising ACL.
ACL is currently based in Peel's 8 Princes Parade in Princes Dock, where it occupies around 20,000 sq ft.
Langtree was appointed preferred developer for the site on the corner of Suffolk Street and Duke Street before the market crash by the North West Development Agency, whose assets later transferred to the Homes & Communities Agency.
The project would involve demolition of 86 and 88-90 Duke Street and construction of a new building. The former vinegar warehouse at the rear of the site would be retained.
Stephen Barnes, development director at Langtree, said: "We appreciate the support and input we've received from our public sector partners in developing this important application and look forward to it being determined by the local planning authority in due course."