GPE secures Westminster planning approval for Rathbone Place development in UK

Great Portland Estates (GPE) has secured resolution to grant planning permission from the City of Westminster (WCC) for its proposed development at Rathbone Place, W1.

GPE said WCC described its plans in their planning committee report as ‘a distinctive, characterful proposal, of high architectural and urban design quality’.

Designed by architects Make, the proposals for the 2.3 acre former post office site include new buildings totaling 414,000 square foot.

The buildings will feature a new public square and new pedestrian routes connecting Rathbone Place, W1 and Newman Street W1, together with 42,000 square foot of retail space, 217,000 square foot of offices and 155,000 square foot of residential in 162 units.

GPE acquired the site in November 2011, leasing it back to Royal Mail Group, who vacated in August 2013.

Work on Rathbone Place is expected to start in 2014 and complete in 2016.

GPE said the development will be a major contributor to the regeneration of the East End of Oxford Street, ahead of Crossrail opening in 2018.

GPE portfolio director Neil Thompson said Rathbone Place is one of several projects the company is working on for delivery over the next few years.

“We are delighted to have received support for our scheme from Westminster, with whom we have worked very closely over the last two years,” Thompson said.