The Kingsway Partnership picked up the ‘Strategic Alliance Award’ at the NW Insider Property Awards North West 2011, the regions longest-established and best-attended awards programme for the commercial property industry.
The partnership comprises developers Wilson Bowden, the Northwest Regional Development Agency, Rochdale Council, Rochdale Development Agency and its development and agency advisers p3 property consultants llp and Jones Lang LaSalle.
Over 870 guests were at Manchester Central to see the Partnership pick up the award at the glittering black tie event, which was hosted by TV star Rory Bremner. The awards comprise thirteen different categories and are decided by an independent panel of judges covering areas of expertise right across the commercial property spectrum.
The Strategic Alliance Award is always hotly contested and recognises the value of close collaboration between public and private sector partners. The judges’ citation read: “The time is right to recognise the efforts of the Kingsway Partnership, a venture that demonstrates genuine partnership working at its best. Real results on projects as vast as this can only come with full commitment from all parties and it’s to their great credit that Kingsway has become a success.”
Kingsway and p3 also came close to scooping a second award on the evening, having had the JD Sports disposal pipped at the post by ITV’s move to Media City for the ‘Deal of the Year Award’.
In May 2010 JD Sports ended two years of speculation by confirming its move to a purpose-built 860,000 sq ft distribution centre on Kingsway Business Park, the largest warehouse developed in the North West in the past decade. Developers Wilson Bowden began marathon negotiations in 2008, with detailed planning consent for the development, which also included a future 86,000 sq ft office HQ, granted in January 2009. Despite then going on hold for several months, JD Sports were out of the blocks again in early 2010, eventually buying the freehold in a complicated forward-sale and leaseback arrangement with Canada Life.
Partner at Manchester commercial property agents p3 property consultants llp Paul Daye, who acted for the Kingsway partnership throughout the transaction, is delighted at the impact this latest transaction has had on the perception of Kingsway Business Park:
“This is now an established location in the premier league of business parks in the UK. With the next phase of mixed-use development due to start in the autumn, we expect Kingsway to continue to attract top quality users from both the local and regional market”
Kingsway Business Park is approx 420 acres next to J21 M62 and has planning permission for 3,000,000 sq ft (285,000 sq m) of industrial units and more than 296,000 sq ft (27,000 sq m) of offices. This will provide a diverse range of accommodation, including speculatively constructed space, and office, industrial and warehousing accommodation by bespoke design and build packages. There is also consent for more than 243,000 sq ft (22,000 sq m) of support retail, hotel & conferencing, childcare and catering facilities to provide a substantial leisure element and completion of a new dedicated Metrolink stop serving the business park together with an element of good quality residential accommodation at the Kingsway frontage completes the overall ‘sense of place and community’. Kingsway Business Park is expected to complete by 2018 and will host a business population of 7,250 direct jobs and create 1,750 indirect jobs overall.