GRE Assets have long championed regional towns and cities as great locations for property investment, thanks to their ongoing regeneration, connectivity, and relative affordability compared to the capital. As people continue to work from home, the appeals of regional towns and cities appear stronger than ever.
With ‘London at a crossroads’, Estates Gazette and the London Real Estate Forum put on a virtual series last month to explore what the future holds for the capital. With the pandemic hitting London especially hard, this blog post will take a look at the trends affecting regional towns and cities in the UK and will use the city of Peterborough as a case study.
Economic activity migrating from the capital
Growing populations, a skilled workforce and the rise of smart technology have made regional towns and cities an attractive relocation option for businesses. This combined with more affordable office rent, means a number of large employers have moved their headquarters outside of London.
Peterborough is a good example of this, with a number of major brands choosing to relocate there. With high-speed rail links to London from the city, a number of major companies call Peterborough home, including Bauer Media Group, BGL Group and Coloplast.
Central government moving away from London
There has been an increased narrative over recent years of government bodies moving away from London. In its recent East of England market feature, Property Week took a look at Fletton Quays, which fits into this.
The £120 million regeneration project, of which our Nene Wharf Apartments are part, will include a 101,000 sq ft government hub. Set to be completed by January 2022, it will be home to 1,000 civil servants from HM Passport Office and the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs.
Regeneration remains high on the agenda of regional local authorities as we head towards 2021. We are seeing major projects changing the face of the UK’s towns and cities to have a stronger retail, leisure and commercial offering, which means they are rivalling London as a place to live and work.
As we explained in a recent blog, with over £600m of planned investment within walking distance of Nene Wharf, Peterborough has seen some great regeneration progress in 2020, despite challenges posed by the pandemic. Major projects include Station Quarter, the extension of Queensgate Shopping Centre, North Westgate and ARU Peterborough.
GRE Assets is a strong champion of towns and cities undergoing regional regeneration.