Former John Lewis site in Aberdeen city centre going on sale

The Aberdeen city-centre site formerly home to John Lewis is going on sale after the branch was controversially shut last year.

Property advisor Savills has been appointed by John Lewis Partnership to bring the former department store at 88 George Street to the market. NHS Grampian currently has a license to occupy the building, which will continue to operate as a vaccination centre throughout the sale process.

The site, which dates back to 1966, spans about 200,000 square feet over four floors, and “offers a unique city-centre retail/development opportunity” in the heart of Aberdeen city centre, according to Savills.

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Stuart Moncur, head of national retail at the latter firm, said: “88 George Street is a substantial and highly prominent building that offers a wealth of potential. Its scale and significant profile could be considered suitable for a range of alternative uses, subject to the usual planning consents.”

Savills says the 'substantial and highly prominent' site in Aberdeen 'could be considered suitable for a range of alternative uses'. Picture: John Lewis.

John Lewis Partnership announced in March that it was pulling out of the Granite City, one of eight of its branches that would not reopen after lockdown, and saying at the time that “the high street is going through its biggest change for a generation and we are changing with it”.

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Meanwhile, it has been announced separately that NHS 24 has taken more than 10,000 sq ft of office space at Caledonian House in Dundee city centre, signing up to occupy the building’s third floor.

The four-storey property – owned by Shelborn Investments – comprises 65,000 sq ft spread over three inter-connecting office buildings. Knight Frank and JLL acted as joint agents for Shelborn, while Avison Young represented NHS 24.

The building was acquired by Shelborn in April 2018 as part of its Shelborn Investments Fund, was previously fully let to HMRC, and has undergone a major refurbishment over the last three years.

Simon Capaldi, office agency partner at Knight Frank, said: “Dundee has seen a significant amount of investment over the past few years, between the £1 billion waterfront regeneration, the redevelopment of the train station, and the opening of the V&A. Located right next to all of this activity, Caledonian House is in a prime position to benefit from Dundee’s resurgence and we already have a great deal of interest in the building’s remaining space.”

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