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Callaghan - John Street

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Jantra

Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostWed Aug 10, 2016 3:38 pm

London is still the financial capital of the world frank. New York pushes it close and maybe one day will take that sobriquet, but just now it stays with London
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Frank

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostWed Aug 10, 2016 3:48 pm

Jantra wrote:London is still the financial capital of the world frank. New York pushes it close and maybe one day will take that sobriquet, but just now it stays with London


What exactly does that mean and what is it based on?

Jantra

Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostWed Aug 10, 2016 5:12 pm

the world derivative market and the fact the city owns it
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Cen

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostWed Sep 28, 2016 5:21 pm

Approved today!
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Rhodri

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostWed Sep 28, 2016 5:36 pm

Good news. Now let's see those cranes - hopefully it will be a busy part of town in next 6-12 months.
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Kyle

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostWed Sep 28, 2016 9:00 pm

I wonder if we'll get an announcement soon about HMRC now this has happened?
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Philnpt

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostThu Oct 20, 2016 7:36 pm

I think this project might not happen.
http://www.propertyweek.com/in-depth/an ... 89.article
I haven't read the article as I'm not registered to property week.
Has anybody got any more info on this or able to read the article???
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Peiriannydd

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostThu Oct 20, 2016 8:43 pm

Philnpt wrote:I think this project might not happen.
http://www.propertyweek.com/in-depth/an ... 89.article
I haven't read the article as I'm not registered to property week.
Has anybody got any more info on this or able to read the article???



I haven't read the article, but I there is still a requirement for large office space for HMRC as they move out of their current HQ in Cardiff and convert that site to a large housing development. So, I appreciate the big government sector hub might be in doubt, but there is still a requirement for a large amount of space.
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nicksocrates

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostThu Oct 20, 2016 9:06 pm

Philnpt wrote:I think this project might not happen.
http://www.propertyweek.com/in-depth/an ... 89.article
I haven't read the article as I'm not registered to property week.
Has anybody got any more info on this or able to read the article???




Article as mentioned;
Government hub programme: the hub of the matter
18 October 2016 | By Mark Leftly

Has the plan to move our civil servants from central London sites to regional hubs survived the Cameron-to-May transition?

Regional hubs
It is the question many agents and developers had been dying to ask. On 7 September, Sir Henry Bellingham, the MP for North West Norfolk and a former Foreign Office minister, turned to Cabinet Office minister Ben Gummer and asked: “What progress [is] the government making in creating a more modern and efficient government estate?”

Gummer’s answer offered nothing new, but at least he didn’t backtrack on previous promises and policies, as many Theresa May appointees have done on replacing David Cameron’s ministers.

“Working collaboratively with departments and local government, we are delivering a public sector estate that is cost effective, supports the delivery of better-integrated public services and exploits surplus land and property to help build homes and create jobs,” said Gummer.

Agents had been worried that the plans to leave 75% of central government sites outlined by Gummer’s predecessor, Matthew Hancock, in February - which would see its portfolio shrink from 800 offices to 200 by 2023 - might be put on hold.

But the strategy remains the same: to turn the Civil Service into what a Whitehall source describes as “a modern employer, by providing staff with modern, fit-for-purpose office space in locations around the country”.

So how advanced are the plans? Which locations is the government looking at? And what are its property requirements?

Theresa May
What progress will Theresa May’s new government make on improving the efficiency of the government estate? - Source: Shutterstock/Frederic Legrand - COMEO
The Government Property Unit (GPU) was established in 2010 and was charged with driving savings across government land and property. According to Hancock, it has already reduced the central estate by more than 2m sq m (21.5m sq ft), saving more than £750m in running costs and accumulating £1.8bn in asset sales in five-and-a-half years.

The central estate does not include all public sector buildings, notably excluding hospitals, royal palaces and overseas offices. But through selling buildings ranging from the historic Old War Office on Whitehall to an obscure bakery and even a lighthouse, the GPU cut office space by roughly the size of Monaco, not bad for a unit with administrative costs of £7.4m in 2015-16.

The majority of this space, though, was in central London, where it reduced the Civil Service estate from 181 properties to 54, a figure that will be further slashed to around 20 buildings by 2025 under what is known as the Whitehall Campus Project.

Essentially, it was time for the GPU to continue its shedding of space outside the capital. Hancock spoke of how the Government Hubs project would create “economies of scale, enabling easier cross-departmental collaboration” across the country.

JLL is acting for the GPU and associated disposals will contribute to the GPU’s target of making £5bn from property sales by 2020.

The intention is to create up to 22 strategic hubs that will see government departments share buildings, or at least consolidating the regional property portfolios of individual Whitehall empires.

There is crossover between the hubs plan and HM Revenue & Customs’ (HMRC’s) Building our Future programme, which will reduce the taxman’s 170 offices to 13 regional centres. In those centres, HMRC will be the biggest tenant and will be joined by other departments to create hubs. For example, a 465,000 sq ft requirement in Cardiff is likely to see 2,000 HMRC staff move in by 2019.

They will be joined two years later by Ministry of Justice employees. HMRC has also snaffled Stanhope’s Ruskin Square in Croydon, where 2,500 civil servants will be based, signing a 25-year lease over the summer.

No Brexit effect
“This is still a work in progress,” says a source close to the GPU. “There is a set order and a set timetable, a lot of which is driven by HMRC and its need for accommodation. But some of these hubs are an awfully long way off.”

The Government Hubs programme has elicited murmurings of discontent from a number of factions but despite concerns agents involved in some of the early processes say they are “quite impressed” by the GPU and are relieved that the “Brexit vote has not had any effect on this process”.

This is still a work in progress. There is a timetable but some of these hubs are an awfully long way off - a source close to the GPU

One high-level public sector agent adds: “As an occupier, the Civil Service - the GPU - has been very succinct, very well organised, very process driven [and has] set clear deadlines.”

In its first wave of hubs, the GPU is keen to find space in Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool totalling 1.8m sq ft and in Glasgow totalling 600,000 sq ft. Sources say the search in Leeds, which is likely to house HMRC and Department of Health staff, is down to two or three potential sites, while plans for Birmingham and a 170,000 sq ft requirement in Bristol are also well advanced.

Manchester, though - where developers are due to pitch their schemes to the government - is where many agents’ attentions are currently focused.

Manchester
Many agents are looking to Manchester - Source: Shutterstock/Shahid Khan
The offices in the running are understood to be Hermes and The Co-operative Group’s NOMA; Patrizia’s First Street; Bruntwood and Select Property Group’s Circle Square; FairBriar International’s Middlewood Locks next to Salford Central railway station; and English Cities Fund’s New Bailey. Knight Frank, Savills, Cushman & Wakefield and Colliers International are among the agents thought to be working on these developments.

Over three phases, this will see an estimated 900,000 sq ft to 950,000 sq ft built for the Civil Service, while the first phase alone could result in around £100m worth of development.

A local property source says: “Phase one in Manchester is 350,000 sq ft - there’s not that sort of space available in existing buildings. It’s a pretty big requirement and developers are falling over themselves to build it.”

In terms of departments that will move first, sources suggest it is worth keeping an eye on areas where the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has properties. DWP’s 20-year Private Finance Initiative (PFI) PRIME contract with Telereal Trillium, which manages its estate, comes to an end in 2018, meaning it has the opportunity to significantly rejig its property portfolio in a couple of years’ time.

This will be one of the first major PFI deals to be completed and, given it was a signature policy of the early Tony Blair years, the 20- to 35-year deals will gradually be coming to an end or reach break clauses over the coming years.

Opposition and job losses
The consolidation of the Civil Service inevitably means job losses. Referring to a visit to an HMRC campus in Nottingham, John Manzoni, who is head of the Civil Service, wrote in a recent blog that “change of this magnitude is difficult - especially as it will mean relocation to a new office for many and, of course, some redundancies”.

This has angered the left-leaning Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS). “We’ve never been opposed in principle to relocations - Civil Service jobs can obviously help support and revive local economies outside London - but we are opposed to what amounts to a wholesale retreat from local public service provision,” says a PCS spokesman.

Regional hubs
“These plans are predicated on an image of old-style government buildings that are no longer required, but in reality we’re talking about job centres, tax offices, courthouses and other sites providing vital services that people will find it harder to access.”

Although this might prove to be an exaggeration, the PCS’s fears are understandable given the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills’ decision this year to shut its Sheffield office as part of its own estate reduction strategy. This was to result in 250 job losses until Theresa May intervened, moving most of the civil servants to a Department for Education office in the Steel City.

John Keyes, senior director of strategic consulting at Cushman & Wakefield, warns that the GPU needs to plan its office designs properly if it is both to squeeze in its civil servants and retain their productivity. “The Civil Service needs modern office accommodation, which tends to be open plan with decent wi-fi,” he says.

“They’ve done a pretty good job in Whitehall with flexible working, so they should be looking at eight desks for every 10 employees - which is pretty normal in the corporate world - or, aggressively, seven.

“But to make that work you need meeting spaces, break-out areas and social space around it to have informal meetings and send emails from. The danger is they do the efficiency bit but not the second part.”

Programme advancing
Richard Bacon, the Conservative who has examined Ministry of Defence property rationalisation in his role as vice-chairman of the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee, agrees. “I’ve got no problem with consolidation taking place, as long as that means space per person per square metre is looked at properly,” he says.

“But the idea of the public sector property estate being managed carefully and accurately is starting to take hold; it had not been a good story over the past few decades.”

The idea of the public sector property estate being managed carefully and accurately is starting to take hold - Richard Bacon, Commons’ Public Accounts

Whether the GPU proves critics wrong remains to be seen, but by all accounts the programme - although much of it won’t be completed for a long time to come - is advancing.

A Cabinet Office source refused to be drawn on where the GPU is with commercial negotiations, but did say: “We are in the process of investigating potential sites for government hubs across the UK.

“The GPU regularly receives proposals from the marketplace, which, where relevant, we evaluate.”

The silence continues then, but, behind the scenes, the GPU’s plans are quickly taking shape.
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Philnpt

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Re: Callaghan - John Street

PostFri Oct 21, 2016 7:04 am

Thanks nick.
Looks like it's still going ahead as planned. That's good news.
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