BDC

Search
BDC Magazine

March 17, 2022

HelloParks and Erste Bank sign a more than EUR 80 million loan agreement

Budapest – HelloParks has signed a loan agreement worth more than 80 million euros (approximately 30 billion forints) with Erste Bank to finance the construction of its megapark’s first three phases in Maglód. The innovative, people-centred and environmentally friendly industrial and logistics park is being developed in several phases, the

Read More »
Work Starts on Site to Build New Homes in Glenrothes

Work Starts on Site to Build New Homes in Glenrothes

National housebuilder, Keepmoat Homes, has officially started work on site at Westwood Park, Glenrothes, which kicks off the eight-year building programme to deliver 420 much needed residential homes to the area.    The range of two-, three- and four-bedroom houses have been designed to cater for a range of needs and

Read More »
Bouygues UK Welcomes Swansea Council on Kingsway Site

Bouygues UK Welcomes Swansea Council on Kingsway Site

Bouygues UK has welcomed councillors and senior officers from Swansea Council on site at 71/72 The Kingsway to give them an exclusive tour of the work carried out so far on this major five-storey office development in Swansea city centre.  Located at the former Oceana nightclub site, when finished the

Read More »

48 Storey Landmark Planned in Southport Renovation

A New York-style skyscraper has been planned to replace the Grand Casino in Southport after renovation plans have been put forward by the Mikhail Hotel and Leisure Group. The plan is to transform the Grade II listed building into a 48 storey skyscraper called the Tower of Hope, making it

Read More »

Latest Issue

BDC 318 : Jul 2024

March 17, 2022

TRANSFORMATIONAL ARENA AND MULTI-USE DEVELOPMENT FOR STOKE-ON-TRENT CITY CENTRE TO BE PROCURED THROUGH PAGABO

PLANS have been revealed for a number of transformative development schemes in Stoke-on-Trent this week, including the mixed-used Etruscan Square development, which is set to procure both its development and construction through Pagabo’s national frameworks.   Etruscan Square, which is backed by £20 million of levelling up funding from the government, is set to transform the city centre with a 3,600-capacity arena, 82,000 sq ft of commercial space, 285 homes, a 138-bedroom 3-star hotel, and a 701-space multi-storey car park to support existing demand and new amenities alike. The announcement of the Etruscan Square development, which is already out for pre-planning consultation, was one of several levelling up initiatives announced by the leader of Stoke-on-Trent City Council at global real estate conference MIPIM. As part of the overall announcement, the procurement strategy for the scheme was revealed by council leader Abi Brown, who spoke to developers at MIPIM about how 7.12 acres of city centre land is shovel-ready, and how Meigh Street Car Park is already being cleared to make way for new development. Jonathan Parker, head of construction at Pagabo, said: “We’re incredibly pleased to be working with Stoke-on-Trent City Council on the procurement of such an exciting development, which will bring huge transformation and opportunity to the city. “The government’s levelling up plans and funding have been widely welcomed, and we’re very pleased to see Stoke-on-Trent City Council has been so quick to put that funding towards schemes that will benefit the wider city. Being able to support schemes like this with simple, yet efficient and compliant procurement processes is something that we’re really proud of and that allows us to help turn these plans into a reality.” The procurement strategy reveals the council’s commitment to the comprehensive delivery of the Etruscan Square masterplan, outlining the use of Pagabo’s Developer-Led Framework to ensure the successful delivery of high-quality, mixed-use development. Meanwhile, the Etruscan Square multi-storey car park will be delivered via a stand-alone two stage design and build contract between the council and a main contractor, which will be procured through Pagabo’s Major Works Framework. Councillor Abi Brown, leader of Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said: “Our Levelling Up projects already have huge momentum behind them and significant, tangible progress is being made to deliver them. We’re confident that we have the right opportunities, and the right mix of developments that can make the biggest difference to our city and are attractive schemes for development. “We’re backed by the biggest allocation in Levelling Up funding for a specific city in the country, we’ve tested out our proposals to major national investors in London, and now we’re telling global brands, major UK-based international companies and key national agencies what we are delivering in Stoke-on-Trent and how they can be a part of our success story.” The council has stated that the £20 million of levelling up funding for the development will be defrayed to de-risk and support the early delivery of the multi-storey car park, infrastructure and first phase residential proposals, which will act as the catalyst for the wider masterplan. Planning approval for the development is expected to be granted in the summer, shortly followed by the tender process to appoint the key parties through Pagabo’s frameworks to deliver the transformative scheme. For more information about Pagabo and its frameworks, please visit https://www.pagabo.co.uk/ 

Read More »

HelloParks and Erste Bank sign a more than EUR 80 million loan agreement

Budapest – HelloParks has signed a loan agreement worth more than 80 million euros (approximately 30 billion forints) with Erste Bank to finance the construction of its megapark’s first three phases in Maglód. The innovative, people-centred and environmentally friendly industrial and logistics park is being developed in several phases, the next, second building is planned to be handed over in the last quarter of 2022. Erste Bank will provide a total of EUR 82 million in loans to Futureal Group’s industrial real estate developer, for the realization of the first three phases of HelloParks Maglód, for a period of more than 10 years. The first 46,000 sqm building (MG1) was handed over in January, just shortly after that it has received the Excellent certificate for the Design Stage in BREEAM’s New Construction category. Preparations are underway for the second 45,000 sqm hall, which is scheduled to be handed over by the last quarter of 2022, however, further facilities are already being designed and licensed to enable the company to meet existing and future needs as quickly as possible. The megapark in Maglód will be realized on a 46-hectare area where the company plans to develop more than 200,000 sqm of warehouse and light industrial space. HelloParks Maglód is located along the ring road M0, near the M4 and M5 motorways and the Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport, in the fastest-growing industrial zone of the eastern agglomeration of Budapest. The megapark in Maglód is targeting logistics and urban distribution service providers, light industry manufacturers, assembly companies, but it can also serve tenants with special requirements. The competitive mix of the location and customer-centric solutions is well demonstrated by the fact that several large companies have already decided to partner up with HelloParks, which was founded just one and a half years ago. The first building, handed over in Maglód, is home to companies with an international network, such as the Hungarian-owned Karzol-Trans, which has been dealing with logistics for more than 25 years, FoxPost, who set up a central warehouse here to serve its nationwide parcel sorting machine network, or the Lithuanian based Bútor1, with a distribution centre for 8 countries. The first 46,000 sqm phase is already operating with more than 80% occupancy and negotiations are underway for the remaining free space “One of the keys to our company’s competitiveness is a comprehensive service package that goes beyond warehousing. The use of environmentally friendly, sustainable and high-quality engineering solutions is becoming a priority not only for us, but also for our tenants, as well as creating a liveable, people-centred and user-friendly environment, which plays an important role in employee retention. That is why we take our clients’ needs into account right from the design stage. The newly signed loan agreement between HelloParks and Erste Bank is another step in the decades-long successful cooperation between one of the largest financial institutions in the Hungarian banking market and the Futureal Group, also a guarantee that with their help we will be able to deliver our plans at the highest level,” emphasized Rudolf Nemes, CEO of HelloParks. “Erste Bank’s more than 15 years of cooperation with the Futureal Group has reached another milestone, and we are particularly pleased that the group has chosen Erste Bank to finance its new industrial logistics business. Environmental protection and sustainability are top priorities within Erste Group and the financing of the planned investment with its BREEAM Excellent rating fits perfectly into the bank’s ESG financing strategy. We are proud to be part of the latest chapter in the history of Futureal,” – highlighted György Salamon, Head of Real Estate Financing, Erste Bank Hungary. The common feature of the completed unit in Maglód, and the planned four modern facilities, each with a floor space of 20-45,000 sqm, is that they will also meet the requirements of the BREEAM sustainability standard through smart solutions for energy efficiency and environmentally friendly operation targeting the highest level, just like the first building. Creating a liveable, people-centred and user-friendly environment that provides long-term value for the partners, is also a key aspect of the development. At the ParkCenter, which will be implemented in accordance with the WELL Standard Mind and Community criteria, short-term offices, HelloCafé, conference rooms with catering services and long-term A-category offices will also be available for the convenience of tenants.

Read More »
Work Starts on Site to Build New Homes in Glenrothes

Work Starts on Site to Build New Homes in Glenrothes

National housebuilder, Keepmoat Homes, has officially started work on site at Westwood Park, Glenrothes, which kicks off the eight-year building programme to deliver 420 much needed residential homes to the area.    The range of two-, three- and four-bedroom houses have been designed to cater for a range of needs and lifestyles, along with access links for pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles within the development and to the wider area. The site will feature useable amenity space and children’s play areas, delivering a safe, pleasant and user-friendly public realm, encouraging active lifestyles and a community feel.   Councillor Altany Craik, Convener – Economy, Tourism, Strategic Planning & Transportation Committee, attended Keepmoat Homes’ ground-breaking ceremony. He said: “Today officially marks the beginning of Keepmoat Homes’ significant house building programme in Glenrothes; a milestone to initiate the start of works on a development of 420 residential homes, of which 42 homes will be affordable housing and serviced land for business use.  “This is a tremendous step forward in the redevelopment of this vacant site to the south of Glenrothes, which was sold to Keepmoat Homes as part of a joint venture between Fife Council and Scottish Enterprise, together with adjoining landowner Land Team Scotland (Glenrothes) Limited.  “I welcome the development of new homes; the vision to create a new thriving community and the benefits that it will bring; as well as the support to local businesses from the proposed land for business use retained by the joint venture partners. This will provide opportunities for businesses to locate in Glenrothes and invest and create jobs in the local economy.”  “We are thrilled to have started work on the site at Westwood Park and we are looking forward to bringing a thriving new community to the area. We have designed the development to respond to the local surroundings, while also holding a strong character and sense of place,” added Derek Wilson, Regional Managing Director of Keepmoat Homes. “We will seek to employ local labour as we see this as an opportunity support local businesses, as well as delivering much-needed new homes. We build family homes that are energy efficient and are designed to provide a breadth of house styles that will suit a wide range of prospective homeowners, from first-time buyers to those looking to up-or-downsize and we are confident that the development will help many achieve their dream of owning a new home.” 

Read More »
Bouygues UK Welcomes Swansea Council on Kingsway Site

Bouygues UK Welcomes Swansea Council on Kingsway Site

Bouygues UK has welcomed councillors and senior officers from Swansea Council on site at 71/72 The Kingsway to give them an exclusive tour of the work carried out so far on this major five-storey office development in Swansea city centre.  Located at the former Oceana nightclub site, when finished the building will house up to 600 workers, will be operationally carbon zero and worth £32.6 million a year to Swansea’s economy. Bouygues UK’s Mike Timothy, project director for the Kingsway site, showed the client delegation around the foundation works that are now well underway before the concrete frame of the building is built in the next few months.  Due for completion in the summer of 2023, the scheme will include 114,000 square feet of commercial floor space with flexible co-working and office opportunities for businesses in sectors like tech, digital and the creative industries. Other features of the new development include a roof terrace, a new link between The Kingsway and Oxford Street, and balconies overlooking the city centre and Swansea Bay.  Swansea Council is developing the project and it is being built by Bouygues UK. It is part-funded by the Swansea Bay City Deal and supported by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government.  John Boughton, Managing Director of Bouygues UK in Wales and the West, said: “Bouygues UK is very proud to be working with Swansea Council on this pivotal project for the city and it was great to welcome the councillors and officers to the site so they could see the progress so far. “The mix of commercial and office space is going to be a great asset to Swansea, along with the other ongoing regeneration projects. The fact that the building, when finished, will operate at net zero is also very important to us as a business, as it’s our ambition to achieve this all of our sites and builds.”  Cllr Rob Stewart, Swansea Council Leader, said: “Visiting the site has enabled us not just to see for ourselves the progress that’s already been made, but also to learn from our main scheme contractor, Bouygues UK, about some of the exciting digital tools soon to be used as part of the project as the development gathers even more pace.  “Once complete, this scheme will offer the kind of modern, flexible office space we know our businesses need to thrive, particularly in the digital, tech and creative industry sectors, where an agile workspace with networking opportunities and high-quality digital connectivity is so important.  “The scheme has attracted significant attention from potential tenants, and it will also benefit other city centre businesses by generating more footfall and spending.”  Cllr Robert Francis-Davies, Swansea Council’s Cabinet Member for Investment, Regeneration and Tourism, said: “This scheme will help retain young business talent in Swansea and provide even more jobs and opportunities for local people.  “It’s yet another example of an artist’s impression that will soon come to life, following-on from a major improvement scheme led by the council that’s already transformed The Kingsway into a far greener and more pleasant environment for residents and businesses.”

Read More »

Home Staging: increasing the attractiveness of objects for sale

Home staging is a trend from the United States that is now becoming more and more widespread. It involves decorating properties for sale to make them look more appealing. Individual rooms are staged, meaning they are furnished in a homely manner. Hence, it is possible in many cases to sell the house quickly and at a high price. However, the question arises whether such techniques are necessary when demand clearly exceeds supply. In this article, we explain why home staging is useful and what needs to be considered. Why is home staging advantageous? In most cases, the previous owners leave the house completely cleared out and empty. As a result, many brokers face a problem with the sale. According to experts, most potential buyers lack the necessary imagination to see their fully furnished and comfortable home in front of them instead of a bare room. Furthermore, potential buyers often have difficulties imagining whether their own furniture will fit in the rooms. CNN.com has an article on what to expect when you buy a home in 2022. Another problem is that apartments often look very dilapidated, for instance, due to a yellowed ceiling or wallpaper in disrepair. Hardly anyone can imagine such properties as an ideal new home. For this reason, home staging is mainly used for older, smaller properties or properties in need of renovation. With the help of the furnished and handcrafted rooms, it can be seen whether a large bed, sofa, or wardrobe would fit in the room and what a potential layout of the room would look like. Moreover, colorful wallpapers, pictures, cozy blankets, and a few plants create a feel-good atmosphere that makes visitors immediately want to curl up on the couch in order to watch a good movie or play games on a console. Those who don’t want an Xbox or PlayStation in their setup can also switch to online games, which can now be conveniently played on a smartphone, such as casino games. There are comparison portals that help players find reputable casinos and discover the best bonus offers. There are lots of European providers, but there are also South African casinos. If you have some South African rand (ZAR), there are operators that accept them, and the best of them can be found on Casinos.co.za. There’s an overview of each operator and their most important features in brief. This way, users can make a solid choice and get to the selected provider with one click. The comparison platform is free of charge. And who knows – maybe you’ll win something that will make the new apartment much more affordable. Even though real estate prices are currently very high and apartments are usually sold quickly, home staging is still a useful method. It speeds up the buying process, as sellers decide more quickly to buy an apartment or house in which they feel comfortable and in which they can better imagine a cozy interior. The fast sales process saves costs for the real estate agent. Additionally, older buildings with a few flaws can hardly be sold any other way. What are the costs of home staging and how do experts work? Home staging increases the attractiveness of the property, which also means a higher purchase price. That’s why more and more real estate agents worldwide are turning to professional decorators to stage the property and create the ideal home with the help of homely elements such as pictures, comfortable sofas, and pleasant lighting. In order to achieve this, agents are also willing to spend some money. For staging an apartment with 1000 square feet, 2500 to 3000 pounds are estimated, plus the cost of renovation work by craftsmen. Home stagers are most often hired by real estate agents prior to a showing in order to make a quicker sale for their clients. But more and more private sellers are also turning to home stagers and hiring experts to remodel living spaces to promote sales. Depending on the clientele and the property, they adapt the kitchen, bathroom, and other living spaces in consultation with the client. The optimal staging of the property follows the design and aesthetic rules. Home stagers work specifically with laws of perception and spatial illusions to fully use the potential of the property. Particular attention must be paid to the cut of the room as well as light and color effects. According to the effort, a home stager needs about three to five days for a job. Since the concept is very promising and the purchase price rises by the decoration, such investments are made by the brokers ever more frequently.

Read More »

48 Storey Landmark Planned in Southport Renovation

A New York-style skyscraper has been planned to replace the Grand Casino in Southport after renovation plans have been put forward by the Mikhail Hotel and Leisure Group. The plan is to transform the Grade II listed building into a 48 storey skyscraper called the Tower of Hope, making it one of the tallest buildings in the north of the country. The building will house 140 apartments, ranging from one-bedroom to three-bedrooms, 109 five-star hotel rooms, a restaurant, a wedding venue, and a car park for visitors.  The project will also boast a health and wellbeing centre, a gym, a spa, and a green space for the surrounding community to use. The hotel group is keen to ensure that the community is behind their project, and has confirmed that all profits from the sale of the building’s apartments will go to charity. The Grand Casino has been unoccupied since 2007 and has housed a variety of different businesses over the years. Starting out as a car showroom in 1923 before being converted into the Grand Cinema in 1938, it remained a luxury cinema for several decades before being converted once again to a bingo hall in 1966. Just before the turn of the millennium, it was closed again and re-opened as the Grand Casino. It’s no surprise that the casino lasted only a few short years before being closed down, as this was the same time that online gambling was taking off in a big way. For the first time, people could gamble from their own homes and not have to worry about getting their winnings home safely from the casino. Since then, hundreds of online casinos have sprung up, all with a large variety of different games on offer. There are trusted review sites that have compiled a comprehensive list of the best real-money slots available, with hundreds of slots to offer. The site also has a page for free slots if you miss playing but don’t want to gamble. Furthermore, they have all the information you need to get started, along with security information, customer service, bonus offers, and how to claim them. This transformation killed a great number of brick-and-mortar casinos, though it’s particularly sad to see a building as beautiful as the Grand Casino sit empty for so long. The beauty of the original building was a big influence in the hotel group choosing it for its latest project. Andrew Mikhail, chairman of the leisure group, said of the project “Bringing fabulous buildings back to life is such a rewarding feeling, and a building as stunning as The Grand Casino deserves to be enjoyed by the people of Southport and beyond”. He also spoke of the need to “cherish the past and build the future”, which perfectly encapsulates the mixture of old and new he is aiming to achieve with this building. The collective has already invested millions of pounds into the surrounding area, with ownership in The Bold Hotel, Lord Street Hotel, Lord Street Sports Bar, and a variety of other businesses in Southport’s Northern Quarter. This slew of recent investments represents an upturn in the fortunes for the Southport area, and can in part be attributed to the Town Regeneration Fund Schemes introduced by the government for struggling towns. Sefton Council is estimating nearly £400m of private investment could be on its way to the seaside town, with The Tower of Hope being a major part of that. The council also anticipates this will have a positive impact on the surrounding community. The tower will bring in a large tourist trade, giving a huge boost to small businesses around the area and the local economy as a whole. Not only that, personal and commercial property prices are expected to increase due to the increase in demand for the area. Building work on the new tower has already begun, creating close to 100 new jobs in the area, with more anticipated upon the completion of the building. It is hoped that landmark investment such as this will draw in other private investors and create a bustling metropolitan area to rival that of its close neighbour, Manchester. This 48-storey behemoth isn’t likely to be a one-off, with the investment group already floating ideas for a sky bar to join this grand hotel. The Tower of Hope isn’t an arbitrary name, chairman Andrew Mikhail has been quoted as saying “I hope that people will look up, see the Tower of Hope and realise, that anything is possible”. If the tower is able to live up to the grand expectations that Andrew has laid out for Sefton Council and the people of Stockport, it will surely achieve its aim.

Read More »