Watkin Jones announces exchange of contracts for the sale of Hove Gardens, a Build to Rent scheme in Hove. The transaction is on a forward funding basis to one of Europe’s largest asset managers – Legal and General Investment Management (LGIM) – on behalf of its Legal & General Retirement (LGR) business, for circa £76.5m.
Hove Gardens is located on Ellen Street near Hove Station. The scheme includes 216 Build to Rent apartments – a mix of 31 studios, 101 one-bed, 73 two-bed and 11 three-bed apartments. The Build to Rent scheme is being delivered in partnership with contractor RG Group and is expected to complete by July 2023.
The one acre Hove Gardens site previously accommodated four light industrial units. With unconditional planning, the site will house the new development which will range from six to 18 storeys in height, with the upper floors offering far reaching views of Hove. The building has a modern design, fused with Hove’s traditional architecture and that of the wider south coast area. The residential accommodation will be rated Home Quality Mark Level 3 with the commercial space achieving BREEAM Excellent.
“We are delighted to have secured institutional investment with LGIM for this exciting scheme. Watkin Jones has a strong track record of development in the South Coast having completed a sizeable PBSA development in Brighton back in 2013.
“Hove Gardens is our first Build to Rent development here and we are really excited as Brighton and Hove is one of the UK’s most dynamic cities. Not only does it offer excellent employment opportunities, with tech being the fastest growing sector in the city, but it also offers a wide range of bars, shops, and restaurants combined with a thriving music and arts scene making it a fantastic place to live and work.”Alex Pease, Chief Investment Officer, Watkin Jones
Hove Gardens will include 5,000 sq ft of amenity space – including a management suite and the potential to offer a resident’s gym and home working spaces. There will also be 31 basement car parking spaces and 324 cycle spaces. Residents also have access to two landscaped communal courtyard gardens on the first floor and two roof gardens on the seventh and twelfth floors – both with sea views.
Brighton & Hove is an ever-growing city where people want to live and work. The ground floor of the scheme will feature some commercial space creating an opportunity for Hove Gardens to tap into the growing demand in the city for high quality office space, particularly for the gaming and tech sectors.
Brighton & Hove has seen impressive levels of job creation and new start-ups in recent years. Well known for its tourism and creative sectors, the city is now a hotspot for tech, with the sector growing by more than 40% over the past five years. Finance and insurance are also major employers, American Express head-quartered in the city, as well as Legal and General who have an office a short distance away from the development.
“The completed development will be the first of its kind in Hove transforming a warehouse brownfield site into a vibrant new place whilst helping to tackle the city’s shortage of housing.
“LGIM Real Assets has over 5,000 homes across 15 schemes in the UK, bolstering Legal & General’s continued commitment to the regions, the levelling up agenda, and the growing strength of regional hubs across the UK.”Mike Powell, Senior Transactions Manager, LGIM
So far this year, LGIM Real Assets has welcomed its first residents to its flagship Mustard Wharf schemes in Leeds, Box Makers Yard in Bristol and completed the final phase of The Slate Yard in Salford, plus committed over £150m in investments to Birmingham and Leeds respectively. With a rapidly growing portfolio of over £2bn and a pipeline to deliver a further 7,500 homes by 2025, LGIM Real Assets remains a leader within the sector.