The British government Monday put up for sale its stake in one of the most significant redevelopment sites in Europe.
Proceeds from the sale of the 36.5-percent interest in the 27-hectare site at London's King Cross station will raise millions of dollars. The money will go to the British Treasury to help reduce the nation's deficit. Indications are that the stake will exceed an early estimate which placed a 540-million U.S. dollar price tag on the government holding.
Worldwide interest in the King's Cross Central site is expected to be high. Would-be purchasers have until Sept. 7 to place the offer and the government has hired the international consultancy Lazard to act as financial advisors in the deal.
The government's sale of its interest is seen as a significant opportunity for private capital to gain exposure to one of Europe's most important city center regeneration projects, said a spokesman for the Department for Transport.
The site is adjacent to King's Cross Station, which services six London Underground lines, and St Pancras Station, from where Eurostar rail services connect to Paris and Brussels.
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Greg Hands said: "Selling our stake in the land around King's Cross is an important milestone which will raise money to pay down the public debt while also encouraging private sector investment in an important London site."
The 67-acre King's Cross estate is being developed into 744,000 square meters of mixed-use space, consisting of offices, apartments, retail space, educational establishments and leisure areas. There are to be 50 new and refurbished buildings and, with almost 28 hectares of public realm, 10 new parks and squares, 20 new streets and three new bridges across the Regent's Canal. Its current occupiers include Google, BNP Paribas Real Estate, the Aga Khan Development Network, and University of the Arts London.