Edinburgh One, the former Scottish Widows Investment Partnership headquarters at 60 Morrison Street in the capital’s prime Exchange District has been purchased by Edinburgh-based Odysseus Capital Management for over £22 million.
A planning application has been submitted by Odysseus CM through Edinburgh based architects CDA to increase the floorspace to circa 85,000 sq ft with a proposed delivery date mid-2023. The proposed new development will include two new floors providing panoramic city views and an extensive new roof terrace. In addition, the façade will be overhauled to completely change the profile of Edinburgh One whilst the lower floors will provide extensive staff facilities.
This building will exceed the requirements of current and planned legislation around the sustainable agenda for office buildings which will render many existing buildings obsolete and unoccupiable without substantial remodelling. Edinburgh One will therefore be futureproofed to meet the demands of ESG sensitive corporate occupiers.
The repurposed Edinburgh One is being delivered to address the forecast critical shortage of Grade A office accommodation in Edinburgh city centre. Whilst the office market was subdued last year during the pandemic, there has been a significant increase in activity during 2021 as businesses prepare to return to the office. With numerous high-profile companies facing lease events in 2023/24 they are already planning to secure high-quality space which achieves their sustainability requirements as well as delivering the wellness and welfare expectations of staff.
Dobson Scotland and JLL have been appointed by Odysseus CM as joint letting agents for the proposed redevelopment.
Keith Dobson of Dobson Scotland, who advised the purchaser, commented: “Edinburgh One is one of the highest profile office buildings in a prestigious location. Odysseus CM intend to completely overhaul the building to address occupiers ESG requirements and deliver a building which will be capable of operating without any use of fossil fuel and no carbon emissions. The building will be fully futureproofed and capable of accommodating professional, financial and tech companies.”
Cameron Stott, lead director in JLL’s Edinburgh office, added: “Whilst many businesses believe they may require less space post pandemic, these same businesses have a preference for high quality space which will help them attract staff back into the office.”