Muckle LLP assists in £200m redevelopment

COMMERCIAL law firm Muckle LLP is assisting in the first phase of the £200m Stephenson Quarter redevelopment.

COMMERCIAL law firm Muckle LLP is assisting in the first phase of the £200m Stephenson Quarter redevelopment.

The firm is providing legal advice to North East developer, Silverlink, on the redevelopment of the site in the centre of Newcastle.

The construction phase which involves a £55m 251-bed, four-star Intercontinental Hotels Group, Crowne Plaza Hotel being built on the site next to Newcastle’s Central Station has already commenced.

Contractor Miller Construction is carrying out the work, while funding is being provided by RBS. The hotel is due to open in July 2015.

Phase one of the 10-acre redevelopment also includes a 357-space multi-storey car park with 35,000 sq ft of offices above which has been forward funded by AVIVA. Completion of the construction work is expected in July 2015.

Newcastle City Council has taken a non-occupational lease of the offices and car park.

The transaction and the issues involved were highly complex and many parties were, and continue to be, involved with phase one.

Muckle LLP was able to draw on expertise across the firm to achieve the objectives set by Silverlink while balancing the needs of the funders and other stakeholders in ensuring the transaction completed.

The legal work was led by Jonathan Combe, head of the Real Estate Group, closely assisted by James Armstrong, on real estate matters and by Andrea Gardner and Alan Ross on the construction aspects.

Combe said: “In terms of legal complexities, throughout the transaction we needed to balance the understandable requirements of the various funders for the two elements of the scheme and those of the other stakeholders.

“All of the parties involved had a common goal which was to achieve the successful regeneration of the site, but they also had their own particular interests to protect.

“Fortunately the goodwill generated on all sides meant that the correct balance was found and it was a genuine team effort in getting the transaction over the line.”

The Stephenson Quarter is expected to create more than 2,000 jobs and be the catalyst for further development in the city centre and the future phases at the Stephenson Quarter.

Alan Schofield, finance director of Silverlink, said: “The commencement of this scheme really is a historic moment for Newcastle and the North East. We have been working on this for ten years and are committed to delivering a new district in the city centre which will stand alongside any major European city.

“Delivering this scheme, will bring back to life an under-used part of the city centre, generating jobs and further development. It is testimony to the confidence in Newcastle and the North East, as well as the determination and skill of everyone involved.

“We’re very grateful to Jonathan and the team at Muckle LLP for their skills and expertise. As a result they were able to represent our interests, whilst working with the other parties involved to ensure the work could get underway.

“We look forward to working with them on the future phases.”

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