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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Okay chaps, this thread can be used to discuss business news for our conurbation - things like expansions or downsizing, lettings, opinions on how to attract more white-collar jobs to the city centre and so on.

I'll start with some positive and surprising news - that Newcastle has out performed other regional cities in office take-up:

Newcastle experiences increased office take-up

02.10.09

By Hardeep Sandher

The city’s supply exceeds that of any other large regional centre


This year Newcastle has experienced more office take-up activity than any large regional UK centre, including Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow.

It might sound strange, considering Newcastle’s size and supply has always been restricted, but the figures are ringing true.

Jones Lang LaSalle research shows the five biggest regional centres experienced between 1% and 1.4% of total existing stock leased, and Newcastle reached 1.8% (graph 1).

Newcastle’s take-up figures for the year 2009 to date has so far meant more than 100,000 sq ft of offices has been leased in the city centre (graph 2). Its out-of-town market has already exceeded last year’s take-up of 390,000 sq ft by 130,000 sq ft (graph 3).

“Newcastle’s office market has always been very cyclical, so the figures have never been very steady over the years,” says Adrian Baker, director at BNP Paribas Real Estate in Newcastle.

“We haven’t had a huge supply of new office developments in the city centre and so take-up has also been limited.

“This year, however, we have had three new buildings completed and occupiers requirements are beginning to increase again.”

This year’s supply of grade A space in Newcastle city centre has risen to more than 290,000 sq ft — double the usual availability — following the completion of City & Northern and Robertson’s 131,000 sq ft Baltic Place scheme and Moonglade Holding’s 120,000 sq ft Wellbar Central scheme, one of the tallest new buildings in Newcastle.

Rents under pressure


The new supply has placed downward pressure on rents. The previously low level of stock meant occupiers competed for the best space. Now, for the first time in years, they have a choice.

“With the opening of Baltic Place the availability of stock has been extended to Gateshead Quays, which was before an untried location for developers,” says Baker.

“Headline” rents have remained at a steady level of £22/sq ft, but many lettings are factoring in generous incentives, which results in rents of around £20/sq ft.

However, cheaper rents in the north’s key city could work in its favour.

“Newcastle’s net effective rent operates at a discount of 23% compared with Leeds and 12% compared with Manchester,” says Chris Hiatt, chairman of JLL’s national agency team.

“And there will continue to be some movement of public sector offices to cheaper locations driven by the ongoing implementation of the Lyons report.”

Rents could be driven further downwards when the future supply is taken into consideration. McAleer & Rushe is attempting to begin its One Millennium Quays development in Gateshead next year and the Hanro Goup and Buccleuch are seeking prelets on their respective Strawberry Place and Fusion schemes in the city centre.

Read more: http://www.propertyweek.com/story.asp?storycode=3150178#ixzz0V3rTgKK7
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Fusion is on Hanover Square/clavering place, built around the listed chapel on the site. demolition of the curved victorian warehouse has already taken place but i dont know if construction proper has started.
 

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Fusion is on Hanover Square/clavering place, built around the listed chapel on the site. demolition of the curved victorian warehouse has already taken place but i dont know if construction proper has started.
Johnny,

Will that project be covered on the 'Stephenson Quarter' thread?
 

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The Legend
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If we are to talk about business etc. What about the Tyne windfarm plans. Where nearly all of the north banks of the Tyne east of Newcastle will be used to make wind turbines. Do you think it will actually create 15,000 jobs (thats the largest number I have seen it would create), I have also seen lower numbers like 6,000, which for such a big area seems to be very little.

Will it actually work, wil their be a demand for it?, will the government actually back it, like they did with Sunderland/Washington Nissan? Will it be as big as Sunderland/Washington Nissan? Will these jobs go to Northern/local people, or will they draft in people from elsewhere?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The UK should be one of the world centres for wind power if we really commit to it, and obviously the north sea would be one of the main places to put new turbines. I wouldn't pin too much hope on it as it is early days yet. I think there is a turbine factory planned for somewhere in the east end - maybe the old siemen's/parson's site in Heaton?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
just found an article - says the factory will be on the banks of the tyne -


North East gets wind turbine contracts

* 17.Sep.09 |
* Posted in Technology and Science
* by bdaily business news network

A multi-million pound project to build the world’s biggest wind turbines will be based in the North East.

The government has given the go-ahead, and officials have awarded £4.4m towards the construction of a new plant that will be at the cutting edge of turbine blade design.

It will be responsible for design and build of prototype turbine blades for the so-called Britannia Project - a £30m plan to build the biggest turbines in the world.

Californian company Clipper Wind Power will be responsible for the project.

It has identified a site on the banks of the Tyne where the blades, which will weigh more than 30 tonnes and stand 70m tall, will be built.

The factory is due to open next year and will employ 60 people.

Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Miliband said: “Our coastline means the offshore wind industry has the potential to employ tens of thousands of workers by 2020, manufacturing, transporting, installing and operating the new turbines.

“It will take an active government to get us there and the funds I am announcing today are part of the £120 million investment we are making this year and next in the wind industry to make that happen.”

The blades will power a 10 mega watt turbine standing 175 metres in height which, over its lifetime, is expected to produce the equivalent power to more than two million barrels of oil.

It will also offset the need to dispel 480,000 tons of CO2 into the earth’s atmosphere.
 

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The Legend
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The UK should be one of the world centres for wind power if we really commit to it, and obviously the north sea would be one of the main places to put new turbines. I wouldn't pin too much hope on it as it is early days yet. I think there is a turbine factory planned for somewhere in the east end - maybe the old siemen's/parson's site in Heaton?
Yes, I think that is the first site to be developed, and everything does seem to be going ahead rather fast, wasn't it only about 9 month's to a year ago we first heard about it? I am hopeful of it, but it is still early days, and like everything I still think orders for the wind turbines will be effected by the global economy, even if it is set up and ready during these tough times.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Yes, I think that is the first site to be developed, and everything does seem to be going ahead rather fast, wasn't it only about 9 month's to a year ago we first heard about it? I am hopeful of it, but it is still early days, and like everything I still think orders for the wind turbines will be effected by the global economy, even if it is set up and ready during these tough times.
i think the big advantage newcastle has is the proximity to the North Sea and the rest of the british isles which is recognised as one of the best places on the planet for wind power. on top of that we have a long track record in heavy engineering and manufacturing and a number of big brownfield sites (for instance along the river) which would be suitable for this type of thing. we just need the govt to start backing offshore wind farms big time.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
some more news on that front:

£7.5m wind turbine factory scheme given go-ahead

May 2 2009 by Adam Jupp, Evening Chronicle

* 1
* 2
* next

THE first step has been taken towards an industrial revolution on the Tyne after plans for a wind turbine factory were approved.
Bruce Shepherd, centre, shows Barry Rowland, left, and Newcastle City Council leader John Shipley around the old Neptune yard

Marine firm Shepherd Offshore applied to build the £7.5m unit at the former Neptune shipyard, at Walker, in Newcastle’s East End.

The move is part of wider plans to turn the north bank of the Tyne into a global hub for manufacturing in the renewable energy and sub-sea technology sectors.

It is hoped up to 10,000 jobs will be created over the next 15 years along a 10km stretch from Walker to North Shields.

Now Newcastle City Council has given the green light to the Shepherd’s application for the 50,000 sq ft plant, with work set to start today.

Council leader John Shipley said: “It is a very exciting time for the river.

“We are about to see it reborn, and I am very impressed with the work that has been done so far to enable us to transform the banks of the Tyne.

“We have a very proud history over many generations, and we now have an opportunity to lead the way in a new set of industries and I am determined that we will be successful.

“The River Tyne has an important position in the UK market for the production of renewable energy, particularly wind turbines, and I feel this is the start of something very big for the city and the region.”

The former Neptune yard has been vacant for roughly 10 years.

The planning application followed a number of land acquisition agreements by Shepherd Offshore and negotiations with a major wind turbine manufacturer involving support from the regional development agency One North East.

The planning application said: “It is anticipated that the demand for offshore wind capability will increase significantly over the forthcoming period, in particular over the next five years, and the development of this site would be the first stage in anticipated additional investment to follow within the same site.”

As part of the wider plans for the north bank, North Tyneside Council is in advanced negotiations to buy the former Swan Hunter shipyard, while engineering experts SLP plan to turn the old Amec yard into their UK manufacturing base, creating 2,000 jobs by 2012.
 

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Personally I think it's brilliant that Newcastle is embracing this technology. It's the future of manufacturing for the area and is a MASSIVE growth industry. Getting your feet in the door early on could reap huge rewards. Hopefully the government will be right behind the city as it's relative inaction over the last decade has let Denmark take the lead in the field.

That is some extremely strong out of town office take-up. Hopefully that form can be carried into the city centre in the years to come. The city is well placed in terms of costs and labour pool. Build it and they will come is often the case. Now it's Newcastle's turn.
 

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The Legend
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Hi Boards, I was woundering when we would see you over here. Nice to hear from you, hopefully when you next visit their might be some pleasant surprises in Newcastle for you.
 

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Should be up in the next few weeks. Really glad the forum is up and running now and we can see all the projects listed. A city the size of Newcastle should be experiencing higher city centre take-up than it has, but as I said, it's out of town market is very strong indeed. I'd love to see a huge phased speculative office development. Something that would deliver over 1m sq ft of grade A at least.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Should be up in the next few weeks. Really glad the forum is up and running now and we can see all the projects listed. A city the size of Newcastle should be experiencing higher city centre take-up than it has, but as I said, it's out of town market is very strong indeed. I'd love to see a huge phased speculative office development. Something that would deliver over 1m sq ft of grade A at least.
520,000 sq ft in out of town office space up to october this year of all years is pretty impressive. But those offices tend to be a few pounds per sq ft cheaper than city centre locations. at the higher end we've not got the same demand as glasgow or leeds.

One place that would be a good area for large office buildings at a slightly cheaper rate than prime city-centre would be Forth Yard - what is currently light-industrial to the south of scotswood road and south & west of the Arena. a lot of it is derelict and i doubt land values are anything special atm. Further to the west Newcastle Business Park has proved very successful for out of town offices and developing between there and the city centre would create a "bridge" of built up urbanity connecting the two.
 

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The Legend
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Should be up in the next few weeks. Really glad the forum is up and running now and we can see all the projects listed. A city the size of Newcastle should be experiencing higher city centre take-up than it has, but as I said, it's out of town market is very strong indeed. I'd love to see a huge phased speculative office development. Something that would deliver over 1m sq ft of grade A at least.
Don't you mean, you go South from Glasgow to get to Newcastle (que the Newcastle meet up thread, lol).

Anyway, yes out side of Newcastle, office space is good, as you know we have Cobalt, which is the UK's largest business park, and is about to double in size (I know their is a similar project going on in Glasgow, although it won't be as big as Cobalt), and we also have other business parks. Even with alot of office space in these places being taken, alot of them still seem to be fairly empty, which means that they still are rival for companies to Newcastle, which is never a good thing.
 

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520,000 sq ft in out of town office space up to october this year of all years is pretty impressive. But those offices tend to be a few pounds per sq ft cheaper than city centre locations. at the higher end we've not got the same demand as glasgow or leeds.

One place that would be a good area for large office buildings at a slightly cheaper rate than prime city-centre would be Forth Yard - what is currently light-industrial to the south of scotswood road and south & west of the Arena. a lot of it is derelict and i doubt land values are anything special atm. Further to the west Newcastle Business Park has proved very successful for out of town offices and developing between there and the city centre would create a "bridge" of built up urbanity connecting the two.

Yeah, the strongest out of town market in the regions. Sounds good. I still think a large speculative development in the City Centre is a goer. The UK receives a lot of foreign inward investment, Newcastle should be trying to get it's share. A cheaper alternative to the M62 corridor and Central Scotland.

I don't know about the Cobalt expansion mate. Tell me more. The Matrix development you mention opened this month, 756,000 sq ft of grade A completely built in one go. Very unusual. There's scope for further expansion.
 

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Basically Cobalt bought the Atmel/Siemans site on Middle Engine Lane, and are turning the whole site into Cobalt South, which is about the same size as the existing Cobalt area.
 
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