Ashurst and Mayer Brown win roles on Shell Centre redevelopment

Ashurst and Mayer Brown have lined up to advise on a £300m joint venture between Canary Wharf Group and Qatari Diar to redevelop the Shell Centre site on London’s South Bank.

Shell Centre
Shell Centre

A Mayer Brown team led by real estate partner Jeremy Clay represented Canary Wharf Group, and an Ashurst team led by partner Simon Cookson advised Qatari Diar on the 50:50 joint venture.

Shell will retain the freehold of the 5.25-acre site while Canary Wharf Group and Qatari Diar each contribute £150m to secure a 999-year lease for the site, excluding the Shell Centre tower.

The new development will be mixed use including office, retail and residential space, while the 1950s-built 27-storey tower in the middle of the Shell Centre will be preserved and retained by Shell.

Shell will also take a 210,000 sq ft pre-let of one of the new office buildings planned for the site.

Mayer Brown lead partner Clay worked alongside real estate partner Anita Jones and corporate partners Richard Page and Stephen Beales on the deal.

Jeremy Clay
Jeremy Clay

“We were delighted to work with Canary Wharf Group on this high profile transaction for the redevelopment of one of the most prime locations in London, and certainly one of the largest and most significant real estate transactions this year,” he said.

The two parties and their advisers will now begin discussions with local planning authorities and relevant stakeholders to establish planning consent, detailed designs and a timetable for construction.

The deal follows news earlier this week that Clifford Chance had advised Canary Wharf Group and Allen & Overy had advised the European Medicines Association on the agreement of a pre-let of 250,000 sq ft within a new 20-floor tower which Canary Wharf Group will begin building at 25 Churchill Place on the Wharf later this year.