Plans approved for £180m redevelopment project in UK

WCN Editorial Team 7 Dec 2021 EUROPE BUILDINGS

British mixed-use developer First Base and private equity firm Patron Capital have reportedly received planning consent from Milton Keynes Council for the £180m redevelopment of Saxon Court site in Milton Keynes, the UK.

Saxon Court is an office building, which was previously occupied by Milton Keynes council and is now being used as a vaccination centre.

In October 2020, the companies acquired the project site to create a new Build-to-Rent homes, flexible workspace, Grade A office, retail and community spaces.

Designed by Rogers Stirk Harbour and Partners, the project will involve retention, refurbishment, and extension of the original Saxon Court building by three floors.

The 2.35-acre site, to be called as MK Gateway, will also include construction of two new buildings, called The Shed and The Village.

The Shed will be a space for local businesses to make and create, while the other building will have 288 apartments with 11 vertical gardens, totalling 4,500ft2, for residents to share and enjoy.

The extending Saxon Court building will provide office space. The existing atrium space in the building will be converted into an indoor public square featuring local independent food, drink, and leisure spaces, connected to an outdoor ‘village green’.

First Base project director Steve Eccles was quoted saying: “We believe this highly sustainable development will support Milton Keynes’ growth ambitions, celebrate the city’s innovative spirit, and generate significant long-term benefits.”

Plan to retain and refurbish the Saxon Court will save more than 3,750 tonnes of Co2 instead of demolishing and rebuilding.

First Base CEO Barry Jessup said: “Working with renowned architecture practice RSHP we have created a new model for post-COVID urban living which blends wellbeing-focused workspace and the UK’s first BTR homes that are connected by multi-level gardens, all set around a new a public courtyard, green spaces and biodiversity.

“We will retain and repurpose Saxon Court, which is part of the fabric of the city centre, significantly reducing the carbon footprint of the development and supporting the council’s vision for Milton Keynes to be net-zero by 2030.”

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The project will involve retention, refurbishment, and extension of the original Saxon Court building by three floors. Credit: First Base Limited.

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