Battersea Project Holding Company (BPHC) expects to achieve full completion of its £9 billion (RM46.77 billion) gross development value Battersea Power Station by 2033, creating a new cultural destination for locals and visitors from around the world.
BPHC chairman Datuk Jagan Sabapathy said the project, which is developed in seven key phases, has reached 60% completion with £5 billion out of the total gross development value realised.
The project, he said, is a creation of a mixed-use destination offering a community of homes, shops, restaurants, offices, culture and leisure venues, as well as 7.689ha of public space all linked by an extension to the London Underground Northern line.
“About three-and-a-half to four phases of the project are currently operating and with the heavy lifting done, it is expected to take roughly another 10 more years to be fully completed,” he told the Bernama after a presentation and briefing of the project development.
He said all projects have their own challenges but since all the infrastructure is in place, the new phases will be phased out accordingly and create significant value for the stakeholders.
Located south of the Thames, the Battersea Power Station or BPS is proudly owned by a Malaysian consortium comprising Sime Darby Property Bhd and S P Setia Bhd, each holding a 40% stake, with the remaining 20% held by the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF).
The commercial assets within the power station building are now directly owned by Permodalan Nasional Bhd and EPF and will be opened to the public on October 14, 2022.
“People who come to London will normally visit famous tourist spots including Buckingham Palace and art galleries, but the BPS should also be included in their list,” he said.
Battersea Power Station Development Company chief executive officer Simon Murphy said difficult challenges do not get solved easily but with the support of shareholders, the company was able to deliver something delightful.
“Now the word we hear the most regarding this project is ‘wow’, and that is the message we want to give.
“This project will not be here if it was not for Malaysia. This would not happen without the shareholders,” he said, adding that Malaysia and the United Kingdom (UK) have worked together to deliver something which others could not achieve.
Murphy said for 30 years people have tried and failed but this was the first time a shareholders group with such stamina, resolution, ability, and knowledge came together with the UK team and brought the building back to life.
“This is the biggest construction project in London in the last 10 years,” Murphy noted.
He also said the residential projects maintained the industrial aesthetics and that the heart of the BPS building for the public is the retail and food and beverages segment.
“We have all types of brands, from small businesses to the big names, which we know have a lot of attention,” he said, adding that the take-up rate for the commercial segment is 95%.
With more than 60 places to shop, dine and experience, the commercial segment will be opened on Oct 14, 2022. Retailers include Hugo Boss, Theory, Lacoste, Ralph Lauren, Aesop, Space NK, Ace + Tate, Mulberry, Jo Malone London, Uniqlo and Mango.
A new neighbourhood bookstore, Battersea Bookshop, from specialist bookseller Stanfords, will also be opening, and Curated Makers, a retail concept that links local independent artists and makers with the high street, will be opening its first unit in London inside the Grade II landmark.
Further brands will launch in the lead-up to Christmas and throughout 2023.
For residential, as per the three phases of projects, the company has secured a 90% take-up rate.
“People are keen to come and live here even though rental rates are going up.
“We have registered over £700 million of sales in the last 18 months and 50% of the buyers are from the UK alone,” he said, adding that the company also sold residential units to the Asian market, the Middle East and the United States.
Asked if the higher inflation had impacted people’s decision towards home ownership or rent, Murphy said there has been a strong appetite for home ownership, particularly in the last couple of years.
The UK’s unemployment rate for the June to August 2022 period stood at 3.5%, down by 0.3 percentage points, the lowest rate since December to February 1974. The next BPS residential project, KOA Residential, will be launched on October 21, 2022, with prices starting from £560,000 for a 389sqft feet apartment.