AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets has announced that on behalf of a consortium of international investors, it will continue construction of 22 Bishopsgate (“22”) in the City of London. The planned 62-storey, 912ft building will be the tallest in the City of London and provide 128,000sqm (1.4m sq ft) of usable space as well a free public viewing gallery at the top of the building.
In late August, AXA IM announced that it would be asking investors whether they want to proceed with the construction after Britain voted to leave the European Union. Their decision to move forward demonstrates their confidence in the project and also in London remaining a key leading global centre for international business despite the current uncertainties created by the Referendum.
AXA IM expect to finalise the appointment of a contractor for the main build of the tower within the next few weeks, with work due to commence thereafter. Significant preparatory works have already been undertaken on the site, including substantially completing the foundations and ground works, which utilised those from the previous unfinished development, to allow for an accelerated construction timetable, with a target completion date of 2019.
Speaking on the development, Pierre Vaquier, CEO of AXA IM – Real Assets explained that their commitment to 22 Bishopsgate reflects our firm belief, and that of our clients and partners, in this development project, aligned to the fact we are taking a long term view of this investment.
Plans include dedicated areas for leisure, health and well being. In line with AXA IM – Real Assets’ ambition to be a globally sustainable business, notably by targeting 75% of total direct property under management to be certified with reputable sustainability labels by 2030, 22 is the first UK building to apply for the Delos WELL Building Standard. This certification recognises the impact that buildings have on the health of their occupiers.
AXA IM is the the leading real estate portfolio and asset manager in Europe with over €66 billion worth of assets under management. The company is also the number 1 portfolio and asset manager in Europe, and among the largest worldwide.