Network Rail agrees deal to support revival of City House in Leeds

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NETWORK Rail has agreed a deal to support the revival of one of Yorkshire’s best known office buildings.

Acting on behalf of Network Rail, property consultant JLL has successfully concluded complex negotiations to agree a new ground lease of City House, the office building which sits above Leeds train station.

Bruntwood has taken a new 150-year lease of the site from Network Rail, owners of the freehold.

The extension of the ground lease secures Bruntwood’s investment and will facilitate the redevelopment of the 12-storey office building.

Bruntwood obtained planning permission earlier this year to undertake an extensive refurbishment of the vacant 121,000 sq ft office building which will feature a roof garden, business lounge and meeting space.

Network Rail has worked closely with Bruntwood over the last 12 months to bring forward plans to redevelop the property to create office space in the heart of Leeds.

A spokesman said: “The revenue generated from the lease will be reinvested back into the railway, and highlights the key role of Network Rail in unlocking land for development – supporting up to 1,200 jobs and delivering economic growth.”

Stuart Kirkwood, director of development for Network Rail, said: “The planned redevelopment of City House will significantly benefit Leeds city centre and provide much-needed office space at a key transport hub. This deal is testament to the major role of railway stations as catalysts for significant regeneration in our towns and cities.”

Craig Burrow, Bruntwood’s director of Leeds, added: “We are delighted to have reached this significant milestone and are now focused on delivering a major reinvention of this Leeds landmark as part of a wider programme of investment and improvements to the station.”

Jeff Pearey, director of office agency in JLL’s Leeds office, said: “Understandably Bruntwood required a longer term interest in the site occupied by City House from Network Rail before investing further in the re-development of the property. Given the current levels of interest in office space across Leeds, the refurbishment of City House, which will be delivered in 2017, will produce further much needed quality office stock.”

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