IMP’s spec-space starts new era on M42 Corridor

As one of the largest investors in the region, IM Properties (IMP) is first off the blocks to spec build on the M42 corridor, developing a new 15,000 sq ft self-contained office building at Blythe Valley Park off junction 4.

FIRST will be built alongside the 15,000 sq ft Prologis prelet which IMP signed up towards the end of 2016 and will be delivered by the property company’s in-house project delivery team.

Momentum at Blythe Valley Park has been building for IMP and over the past 6 months has seen Rybrook Holdings sign up to a 15,000 sq ft prelet and 17,810 sq ft let to PKF Cooper Parry, in its £5 million refurbished One Central Boulevard offices.

The new spec built offices, will aim to provide a  ‘best in class’ specification to be EPC A rated and BREEAM Very Good. Planning permission is in place and the building will be ready to occupy by Q1 2018.

IMP’s development director, Lewis Payne said: “This isn’t a leap of faith for IMP, just a simple reflection of the demand at Blythe, which has seen occupiers voting with their feet and signing up to the location and the lifestyle, the 122 acres of parkland the site has to offer.

“If ever there was a case for spec building, Blythe Valley Park has presented it to us and what we want to deliver to the market is equally bold, with not just a new building but statement offices to attract the same level of occupier that we’ve seen drawn to the park over the past year.”

IMP has worked hard to broaden the occupier offer at Blythe, creating a purpose-built 1,500 sq ft coffee shop on the site to be operated by quality independent coffee operator, Java Lounge. There is also a wide range of tenant-focused events encompassing charitable, social and wellbeing themes to help attract and retain the right talent.

Ashley Hancox, CBRE’s Birmingham-based national head of offices, and joint lettings agent for Blythe alongside Savills said:

“It’s a long time since we’ve had speculative office construction along the M42 Corridor. Demand is currently high for out-of-town offices driven by a lack of quality stock and so we share in IMP’s conviction that the time is right to develop speculatively.

“There’s no doubt that IMP’s reinvention of Blythe focusing on the lifestyle, amenity and environment of the park is striking the right chord with occupiers who want both the connectivity of the M42 and an offering that sets themselves apart from their competition.”

Blythe forms a significant part of IMP’s portfolio in the Midlands and recently won outline planning to create one of the most ambitious sustainable new communities in recent years, centred around creating up to 750 new homes.

As part of the approved plan, IM Properties will also look to add up to a further 1 m sq feet of commercial space, which will potentially create up to 7300 new jobs in the area. Provision for a 200-bedroom hotel and a housing with care facility of up to 250 units, leisure and other uses of up to 40,000 sq ft is also included.

IM Properties, based in Coleshill, is one of the largest privately owned property groups in the UK, with an investment and development portfolio of circa £900 million across the UK, Europe and US.