Glasgow rent record set as property firm moves into its own flagship office development

A new headline rent has been claimed in Glasgow after a property firm agreed a deal for space in the city’s largest single office building, developed by the company itself.

Commercial property and investment outfit HFD Group will take the top floor of its own flagship 177 Bothwell Street office development.

While the majority of HFD’s team will move to the site, a number of the group’s operational businesses will remain at its current base at Strathclyde Business Park.

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The move sets a new headline rent of £40 per square foot in Glasgow - an increase on the previous high of £35.25 per sq. ft.

Other occupiers for the new office development include Virgin Money, BNP Paribas, Aecom, CBRE and Transport Scotland, with HFD’s flexible serviced offices business, HFD Offices, also operating from the building.

The development will feature a rooftop terrace and running track, 318 cycle spaces and electric vehicle charging points, as well as touchless technology throughout the building.

An independent economic impact assessment concluded that the 315,000-square-foot development will generate £2.8 billion of gross value added (GVA) to the Scottish economy over a period of 25 years.

William Hill, chief executive of HFD Group, said: “Our business has grown significantly in recent years and the physical re-positioning of HFD reflects that this is where we are doing most of our work. That said, our facilities management service and back-office functions will continue to operate from Strathclyde Business Park, reflecting the importance to us of both the city centre and out of town locations.”

The 177 Bothwell Street development in Glasgow city centre will be home to a number of businesses including Virgin Money.

Stephen Lewis, managing director of the HFD Property Group operation, added: “It is the strongest possible testimony for other occupiers when the developer of a property is also located in the building.

“This move demonstrates that we truly believe that 177 Bothwell Street is the best office development in Glasgow and we are committed to what we said we would achieve at the building, as well as the sustainability of our own business,” he added.

Last month, HFD said it had agreed terms with HSBC UK to refinance its 177 Bothwell Street development.

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The green loan facility, providing funding in excess of £100 million, requires the vast building to continue to meet a range of sustainability targets.

Developers have committed to achieving an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) A score of less than eight - making it 45 per cent more energy efficient than a standard A-rated building.

Smart technology will be used throughout the building to reduce energy consumption and improve environmental performance, while its energy will be supplied by Blantyre Muir Wind Farm in South Lanarkshire.

The building’s facade and glazing is designed to maximise natural daylight while maintaining a high thermal performance.

Lewis said: “177 Bothwell Street is an exceptional asset and, with our initial development funding package set to expire, we took the opportunity to find partners who could fund the development’s next stage.

“Given the property’s quality and sustainability credentials, interest was strong among the potential funders we spoke to.”

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