AXA Investment Managers - Real Assets submits planning application for Assembly Bristol, the 300,000 sq ft city centre development


AXA Investment Managers - Real Assets (“AXA IM - Real Assets”), the leading real estate portfolio and asset manager in Europe(1), announces that it has submitted a planning application for the overall masterplan and first building (“Building A”) for its Assembly Bristol regeneration project, to Bristol City Council. In November 2015, AXA IM - Real Assets completed the acquisition of the 1.5 acre development site on behalf of its fourth generation development fund, Development Venture IV, and expects a decision early in 2017.

In the heart of the Temple Quarter on the floating harbour, the new masterplan will see the creation of  three characterful buildings, delivering an innovative people friendly workspace across 300,000 sq ft (27,871 sqm) of mixed use buildings and public spaces. Alongside the work environment, extensive waterside spaces, rooftop gardens and a mix of indoor and outdoor amenities will link directly between Temple Meads Station, the historic City Centre and the retail area at Cabot Circus, which is 50% owned by AXA IM - Real Assets on behalf of its clients.

Led by architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, with landscapes designed by Jinny Blom, Assembly Bristol will represent a working environment ready for new business ways of working, through its honest architecture and sustainable, people based design principles.

Building A, so named to befit the straightforward ethos of the scheme, will be 180,000 sq ft (16,723 sqm) of flexible workspace, designed with staff needs and productivity at its core, incorporating openable windows, external terraces and prominent interconnecting staircases, fronted by a major new landscaped square and garden joining the waterfront. The Building A, which is expected to complete by 2018, is currently being marketed to prospective occupiers by Savills and JLL. Detailed design and the planning process for the second and third buildings that make up the masterplan will be reviewed to fit emerging occupier demand.  

In line with AXA IM - Real Assets’ global portfolio, the development is targeted to achieve a BREEAM Excellent rating, WELL certification and a Platinum Wired Score, demonstrating not only the building’s high sustainability but also the creation of a healthy, technology enabled workplace supporting the productivity and wellbeing of the occupiers.

The scheme follows AXA IM - Real Assets’ principles of investing in prime city centre locations which benefit from strong markets and infrastructure; in this case the investment to upgrade the Great Western Railway, which will provide four trains per hour directly to London in 1hr 20 by 2018, when the first phase of the Assembly Bristol scheme is expected to complete. The development benefits from excellent transport links, being just 15 minutes’ drive from the M4/M5 interchange and eight miles from Bristol International Airport.

Harry Badham, UK Head of Development at AXA IM - Real Assets, commented: “This is the next stage of this exciting concept for both us, our clients, and for Bristol City Centre. We are working with a professional team to bring forward the vision for this site, which we believe has the potential to provide businesses with an environment that offers the opportunity to attract leading talent, whilst also ensuring that it fits seamlessly into Bristol’s city centre. Our aim is to be on site to deliver the first of the three buildings during 2017 and we look forward to sharing our plans for the rest of the scheme in due course.”

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1 Source: IP Real Estate Top 100 Investment Management Survey – Nov/Dec 2016

Press Contacts

AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets
Charline Coué, Media Relations Managers, Real Assets
Jocelyne Tamssom, Head of Communications, Real Assets
Tel +33 1 44 45 97 95

FTI Consulting Inc.
Richard Sunderland, Ellie Sweeney, Richard Gotla, Tom Gough
Tél. : +44 20 3727 1000