Workspace sells housing arm of Riverside redevelopment

Workspace bets on office and commercial demand as housing arm of Wandsworth redevelopment is sold ahead of new business centre

  • Workspace said the office building would hold 153,000 sq ft. of rentable space
  • The Riverside development is intended to attract small and medium-sized firms

Real estate group Workspace has sold the residential segment of the mixed-use Riverside scheme in the London borough of Wandsworth for £54million.

Just under £44million will be immediately received by the property developer as part of the deal, with a further £10million being paid out in March next year.

The FTSE 250 company vacated homes at the Riverside location in December ahead of a major redevelopment, which will see the construction of a large new business centre called Riverside Factory.

Scheme: Workspace has sold the housing arm of the mixed-use Riverside redevelopment in Wandsworth, London,  for £54million (Pictured: CGI representation of Riverside)

Workspace said the building would hold 153,000 square feet of rentable space, including five floors of workshop and commercial space, while the ground floor will be home to a light-industrial unit.

Like the overwhelming majority of holdings across the firm’s 60 London sites, the South West London development is intended to attract small and medium-sized companies.

It also said the building would have an energy performance certificate rating of A, the highest possible rating that an office or home can possess, along with heat pumps, smart metering and bike storage amenities.

From the start of April, commercial landlords will not be allowed to lease or renew a tenancy on a property with a minimum ‘E’ EPC rating. That rule will be tightened in 2030 when buildings will need at least a ‘B’ rating.

Workspace was initially granted planning permission from Wandsworth Borough Council to build the centre, as well as over 400 houses, in December 2020 during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Last September, an amendment allowed the number of dwellings to be increased to 433. By that stage, however, the group intended to sell the residential slice of Riverside.

Set to be completed across six phases, the project will comprise 30 per cent affordable homes and flats with between one and four bedrooms.

Chief executive Graham Clemmett said: ‘We look forward to adding a major new business centre to our portfolio, which will sit adjacent to the residential development, with excellent access from Garratt Lane and just a five-minute walk from Earlsfield Railway Station.

‘By repositioning outdated sites into attractive, sustainable mixed-use space, we can extend our strong footprint of high-quality workspace across London and deliver on our strategy of employment-led regeneration in the areas we operate in.’

Workspace shares were 3.7 per cent lower at 456.4p when trading closed on Friday. They have shrunk by approximately 22 per cent over the past 12 months amid rising economic uncertainty.

Commercial property values are predicted to tumble this year due to rising interest rates and the trend of working from home making companies more reluctant to lease extra office space.