BAM/Hermes bag Brodies for Edinburgh HQ

By Paul Norman - Wednesday, September 05, 2018 6:00

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BAM Properties and Hermes Investment Management have secured Brodies, Scotland's largest law firm, as the first occupier at Edinburgh speculative office development Capital Square, CoStar News can reveal.

Brodies will lease the top three floors of the eight storey, 122,000 sq ft development. It has signed for 43,174 sq ft at an undisclosed rent. 

Rents are thought to be up to £30 per sq ft.

Designed by architect Hurd Rolland, the building is situated between Morrison Street and Lothian Road in the Exchange Business District and features a glazed curtain-walling façade, double-height reception with a courtyard entrance, all set within south-facing landscaped gardens.

BAM Construction has been appointed to build the eight floor office development.

Work is underway and is scheduled for completion in May 2020. A further 79,033 sq ft remains available for let.

Dougie Peters, Managing Director, BAM Properties said: “We were confident the market was right for a speculative investment of this scale and are delighted to welcome Brodies as our first occupier at Capital Square. There is an element of history repeating itself as Brodies was also our first occupier in our previous development at 110 Queen Street, Glasgow.

“Much has been documented about the lack of available Grade A space in Edinburgh and Capital Square will go some way to address the pent up demand for high calibre office space in prime locations which helps occupiers attract and retain the best talent. It was important to Brodies that the building afforded the best in modern working practices and provided a great place for staff to work and clients to meet.”

Hermes Investment Management, working in conjunction with Parlison Properties, secured planning permission for the scheme in 2015 and Parlison Properties is continuing as development consultant for the project.

Ian Cody, Director - Asset Management at Hermes Investment Management added: “As Scotland’s largest law firm, Brodies is exactly the type of occupier we were targeting for Capital Square, which is testament to BAM Properties’ work so far in positioning the property. This would also not have been possible without the assistance of our fellow landowner and partner, The City of Edinburgh Council.

“Brodies will no doubt take full advantage of the development’s strategic location in the heart of Edinburgh as well as the high quality facilities, which will create a prime working environment, and benefit from the building’s excellent sustainability credentials. We look forward to welcoming them at the building once it is complete.”

Capital Square will feature a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating and an EPC ‘A’ rating on completion. Additional building features include concierge level front of house service, 24 hour manned security, shower and locker facilities for cyclists and runners.

Nick Scott, Managing Partner of Brodies, said: “Ensuring that we can continue to provide our clients with the environment, as well as the quality of service, that they have grown to expect from our firm is fundamental. Our investment in these new premises underpins that. Moving to Capital Square will allow us to continue to build on those things that our clients value, including our extensive seminar programme. This new building will be a great place for clients to meet and work with our colleagues, and for us to host client events.

“It is also essential that our colleagues benefit from a working environment that affords them the very best in modern working practices, consistent with the new offices we have secured in Aberdeen and Glasgow in recent years. The move will also echo the commitments we have made to sustainability in those locations. Moving to Capital Square will enable us to work more collaboratively with colleagues and clients alike, as well as providing premises that will support our future strategic plans.”

Grant Lonsdale, CoStar Analyst, said: “Sustained demand from both existing Edinburgh occupiers and new market entrants coupled with the loss of around a quarter of a million sq ft of offices during the last year have caused Edinburgh's vacancy rate to fall to an all-time low. Despite the seemingly healthy supply pipeline, many of Edinburgh's forthcoming deliveries are either pre-let, or are likely to be pre-let prior to completion, meaning vacancies face little upward pressure in the near term.”

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CBRE and Montagu Evans represented BAM Properties and Hermes Investment Management.

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