Clearbell secures planning for Life Sciences asset at 85 Gray’s Inn Road.

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Clearbell Property Partners III LP (Clearbell), a fund managed by Clearbell Capital LLP, today announces that it has secured planning permission for its life sciences office building at 85 Gray’s Inn Road.

The fund acquired the 28,000 sq ft office building for £18.5m in March 2021. It is located in the heart of London’s ‘Knowledge Quarter’, which is home to over 100 academic, research and scientific institutions.

Clearbell has secured planning permission from Camden Council to reposition the asset to create a blend of office and wet lab space. The plans include creating an additional 3,200 sq ft of floor space through rooftop changes and infilling the courtyard. The fund will also refurbish the reception, WCs and create a new rooftop terrace, as well as creating cycle parking and shower facilities. Once complete, the building will offer bespoke wet lab facilities with ancillary office accommodation. The works are due to be completed by February 2023.

85 Gray’s Inn Road is able to provide much-needed wet lab enabled supply to the constrained market, amid high demand from life sciences tenants in London, avoiding the need for tenants to retro-fit office floors with sub-optimal physical characteristics

Dominic Moore, Head of Asset Management & ESG Director at Clearbell Capital, said:

“We are delighted to be able to begin work at 85 Gray’s Inn Road following approval by Camden Council. Our plans to create additional floorspace to accommodate more wet lab space come at a time when the UK life sciences sector is booming. There is a chronic lack of supply of labs in key cities, including London. If the UK is to retain its strong life sciences industry, which has coalesced in key regions such as London’s Knowledge Quarter, development needs to be rapidly ramped up.”

Clearbell was advised by Savills as planning consultants.

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