Investor and developer GLP, is starting the speculative development of 1 million sq ft of warehouse space across the UK – in a move that it claimed is the largest programme of speculative logistics real estate development currently underway nationwide.
It has started construction on seven units, across four sites in Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire and Milton Keynes, following the grant of planning permission.
The development programme has been launched to satisfy the significant demand in an increasingly supply-constrained market and follows the practical completion of 1.25 million sq ft of speculative development at Magna Park South, Lutterworth in December 2020.
“Demand for larger warehouses has significantly expanded in recent years, particularly among e-commerce occupiers in need of more storage space,“ said Bruce Topley, Managing Director, GLP UK. “The growth of e-commerce in the UK has been accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic given the increased importance of home deliveries. As a result, we have seen a surge in demand for logistics real estate in the right locations. Customers are also seeking to reinforce their supply chains and increasingly require higher specification buildings and cutting-edge sustainability credentials.
According to Savills, online sales in December 2020 were 51% higher year-on-year, with this growth trajectory expected to continue. As a result, warehouse take-up was 50.1 million sq ft in 2020 – by far the strongest year on record.
As part of the programme, GLP is developing three units of 126,000, 161,000 and 249,000 sq ft at G-Park Bedford Wixams in Bedfordshire as well as 133,000 sq ft unit at G-Park Northampton, within the Moulton Park Estate. It secured panning permission for two units comprising 117,000 and 140,000 sq ft at its new G-Park Milton Keynes development at the end of last year and is due to start construction shortly. The final unit totals 88,000 sq ft and is known as Magnitude 88, located at GLP’s flagship logistics park Magna Park Milton Keynes
The developments are expected to be available for occupancy in Summer 2021, while Magnitude 88 will be available at the end of the first quarter 2021.