BlackRock’s European Property platform and Outpost Management have formed a new joint venture to invest £500m in UK residential assets, with the objective of building high-quality, multifamily residential housing in key cities where demand outweighs supply.
The new joint venture has completed the seed acquisition of a brand-new freehold asset at 101 Camley Street, adjacent to King’s Cross and St Pancras stations. BlackRock and Outpost acquired 101 Camley Street from LabTech Group. Simmons and Simmons, Hollis, and Colliers acted on behalf of the joint venture.
The London asset comprises 121 residential units and 30,000 sq ft of flexible commercial space, and is set in a landscaped urban garden on Regent’s Canal. The asset has achieved a BREEAM Excellent rating due to its innovative building design features and investment in sustainable technologies to reduce energy consumption and improve water use.
Residential asset and development manager – Outpost – will operate the property on behalf of BlackRock under its new residential platform. The asset was acquired vacant on practical completion of the residential units. Outpost will operate the estate as a Build to Rent scheme – and will invest in additional amenities including a resident gym, sky lounge, private dining room, co-working zones and a dedicated 24/7 on-site service team. The acquisition also enables the delivery of affordable and shared ownership housing – with Origin Housing, the King’s Cross-based registered social landlord leasing part of the scheme.
“Camley Street is arguably the most important prime residential asset to come onto the central London Build to Rent market. Its Zone 1 location adjacent to the King’s Cross lifestyle and employment hub, combined with our value-add amenity expansion and service offering, will ensure a world class living experience for residents. Securing this site in partnership with BlackRock is a huge achievement for Outpost and is an important step for us as we build a market leading rental housing platform in Europe’’.Troy Tomasik, Outpost Management founder and CEO
Designed by KSR Architects, the scheme is composed of two striking brick and steel-clad blocks stepping down to Regent’s Canal, adjacent to Saint Pancras Gardens, the new public realm in Kings Cross and the Camley Street Natural Park.
The apartments are fitted with smart home controls. Communal areas are powered by onsite solar energy, with LED lighting and efficient water fixtures throughout. Rooftop terrace gardens create an urban oasis and enhance local biodiversity.
“As workers return to cities following the pandemic, we see high-quality residential sites in prime locations as an opportunity. Camley Street is set to benefit from tenants’ desire for easy access to the burgeoning life-sciences and technology scene in King’s Cross, nearby parks and amenities. As competition for residential units intensifies, this acquisition demonstrates our continued ability to source attractive deals and we’re thrilled to partner with Outpost.”James Halstead, Director, BlackRock European Real Estate
The Camley Street site forms part of a ‘gateway’ to the future Camley Street regeneration area and occupies a pivotal rental location strategically located within both the Regent’s Canal and King’s Cross conservation areas. It is also moments away from Google and Facebook’s new London HQs, Granary Square’s UAL campus, Coal Drops Yard and luxury resident development Gasholders London.