City Corporation approves third tower in a month as developers back Square Mile’s future

The City of London Corporation has today (24 February) approved a new 38-storey development at 2 Finsbury Avenue, making it the third tall building to receive planning permission in the Square Mile in 2021.

The newly approved office-led development, by British Land and GIC, aims to become an innovative, inclusive and sustainable place to work, visit and learn.

The scheme, which is designed by Danish firm 3XN, incorporates new ways of working with flexible and adaptable workspace suitable for a range of occupiers - from incubators and start-ups to medium sized business. An innovative ‘Open Learning Hub’ will be provided as a way for local communities to access the City’s knowledge and expertise through formal learning programmes, informal networks and talks from institutional providers.

The scheme is targeting BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ through high sustainability standards including the adoption of Circular Economy and Whole Life Carbon Principles. The design has been assessed by the City’s new, cutting edge Thermal Comfort Index.

The scheme will widen pavements and create a new north to south pedestrian route connecting Finsbury Avenue Square to Sun Street, adding new public realm with vibrant retail frontages.

The development exceeds policy standards on both long and short stay cycle parking spaces, providing a combined total of more than 1,500 new cycle spaces. A prominent cycle entrance and integrated cycle workshop promotes healthy modes of transport, in line with the City Corporation’s Transport Strategy.

Chair of the Planning and Transportation Committee at the City of London Corporation, Alastair Moss, said:

“The high-quality design for 2 Finsbury Avenue is yet another step in the radical transformation of Broadgate as a thriving and vibrant destination in the City. It will re-enliven the Liverpool Street area through better pedestrian connectivity, improved urban greening and the enhancement and activation of the public realm.

“The developers have ensured sustainability remains at the core of the scheme and have embraced emerging trends for the post-pandemic world, including flexible and adaptable office space to address new ways of working.

“This is the third tall building application to be approved by the Planning and Transportation Committee this year which shows that the fundamental strengths of the City remain unrivalled. 2 Finsbury Avenue is yet another bold example of solid commitment to the City of London by developers as the nation looks toward the steps to unlock national restrictions.”

Head of Development at British Land, Nigel Webb, said:

“We’re delighted with the City of London Corporation’s decision to grant planning permission for 2 Finsbury Avenue.

“As businesses look beyond Covid-19, it is clear that high quality workspace in great locations will continue to play a crucial role in their success, by promoting and supporting innovation, collaboration, training and culture.

“2 Finsbury Avenue is well placed to meet the current and future needs of occupiers and visitors. Designed by award winning architects 3XN, the building incorporates ambitious sustainability initiatives, seeks to enhance health and wellbeing through access to green spaces and outdoor terraces, and benefits from being part of the Broadgate campus with its excellent connectivity, green open spaces and exciting range of amenities.”

British Land is investing £1.5billion over 10 years to transform Broadgate into a world-class, mixed-use destination for London. 

The development at 2 Finsbury Avenue offers more than 83,000 sqm of office floorspace, more than 700sqm of retail space and more than 2,100 sqm of learning space.

The City Corporation’s Planning and Transportation Committee awarded planning permission to the proposal for 70 Gracechurch Street on 16 February and to the proposal for 55 Gracechurch Street on 26 January.


Notes to Editors:

About the City of London Corporation: The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. www.cityoflondon.gov.uk

About British Land: Our portfolio of high quality UK commercial property is focused on London Offices and Retail around the UK. We own or manage a portfolio valued at £13.7bn (British Land share: £10.3bn) as at 30 September 2020 making us one of Europe’s largest listed real estate investment companies.

Our strategy is to provide places which meet the needs of our customers and respond to changing lifestyles - Places People Prefer. We do this by creating great environments both inside and outside our buildings and use our scale and placemaking skills to enhance and enliven them. This expands their appeal to a broader range of occupiers, creating enduring demand and driving sustainable, long term performance.

Our Offices portfolio comprises three office-led campuses in central London as well as high quality standalone buildings and accounts for 65% of our portfolio. Our Retail portfolio is focused on retail parks and shopping centres, and accounts for 31% of our portfolio. Increasingly our focus is on providing a mix of uses and this is most evident at Canada Water, our 53 acre redevelopment opportunity where we have plans to create a new neighbourhood for London.

Sustainability is embedded throughout our business. Our places, which are designed to meet high sustainability standards, become part of local communities, provide opportunities for skills development and employment and promote wellbeing. In April 2016 British Land received the Queen's Award for Enterprise: Sustainable Development, the UK's highest accolade for business success for economic, social and environmental achievements over a period of five years.

Further details can be found on the British Land website at www.britishland.com

About Broadgate: Broadgate is where innovation and finance play.

It is the largest pedestrianised neighbourhood in Central London: a diverse community connecting innovation and finance, and a public arena for new food, retail and culture.

Lying adjacent to the busy transport hub of Liverpool Street station and surrounded by Shoreditch, Spitalfields, Old Street and the City, Broadgate connects Europe’s capitals of investment and technology.

Joint owners British Land and GIC are investing £1.5 billion in Broadgate’s evolution into a world class, mixed use destination for London.

Their masterplan for Broadgate will deliver 4.9 million sq ft of new and redefined workplaces, retail and restaurants, bringing people together to work, shop, drink and dine.

Broadgate’s rare collection of public spaces combines the community and feel of the historic piazza with the energy of modern London. These spaces play host to over 100 cultural events annually, providing a showcase for emerging ideas and talent.