The London office of Hines, the international real estate firm, announced today that it has formed a joint venture with Hermes, the UK's largest pension fund manager, to redevelop and reposition the former Safeway Headquarters complex in Hayes, West London. Recently, supermarket group Wm Morrison's plc sold the 300,000-square-foot, 10-acre development, for $39.4 mln to Hermes.
Located on North Hyde Road in Hayes, West London, approximately 1.5 miles north of Heathrow Airport and nine miles west of Central London, the complex is comprised of seven structures four office buildings, two warehouses and a 700-car garage.
When Morrison's vacates the site in March 2006, as development and asset manager, Hines will oversee plans to refurbish three of the four office buildings a seven-story, 56,000-square-foot building, a four-story, 95,000-square-foot building and a three-story, 68,000-square-foot building as well as develop the remainder of the site.
Hines has chosen Reid Architecture to redesign the complex, and is in discussion with officers at LB Hillingdon (the local zoning authority) to obtain building permits as well as re-zoning the site to include retail, hotel and possibly a residential component. Hillingdon has also expressed interested in the venture developing a cinema or convention center.
"This project represents a first for the Hines/Hermes venture meeting both our strategic goals," said Hines Project Director Peter Holden." Hines has a track record of working with large institutional funding partners in Europe and the USA, as well as delivering quality architecture that is well-received by the communities in which the developments lie."
The new Heathrow Connect rail service that links Hayes to the Airport and Paddington, and Heathrow Airport's planned expansion will have a positive impact on the development's location. Holden noted that flexible leases will be offered with unit sizes from 3,500 square feet to over 250,000 square feet, as well as generous parking allowances of one space per 200 square feet.
Tim Turnbull, commercial director of Hermes said, "This project is another stage in our strategy to build a more opportunistic commercial portfolio to deliver our performance into a recovering occupational market."