Global law firm Ropes & Gray has advised Dutch pension fund APG on its 75% investment into Edinburgh St James Unit Trust, the unit trust carrying out the £1bn redevelopment of the St James Centre in Edinburgh, and its subscription commitment to finance its share of the remaining £800m of development costs. The investment is a joint venture with TH Real Estate, the sponsors of the scheme, who have owned the project since 2006. TH RE will continue to hold the remaining 25% stake on behalf of its UK Shopping Centre Fund and will continue its role as development and asset manager.
The development, which involves 1.7m sq ft of retail and leisure space, is one of the UK’s largest private sector regeneration projects. The scheme will feature 850,000 sq ft of retail space anchored by John Lewis, a 30-screen cinema, a world class hotel, 150 private apartments, 30 restaurants and 1,600 car parking spaces. Due for completion in 2020, the project will create up to 3,000 permanent jobs.
The Ropes & Gray team (all based in London) included real estate partner David Seymour, tax partner Brenda Coleman, tax associate Chris Agnoli, and real estate associate Will Bryant.
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