These Two Unfashionable Areas Have Been Branded London’s Emerging Investment Hotspots

Wembley and Barking have been named London’s top emerging investment hotspots in a report by global real estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield.

The study ranks the city’s top locations for investors and occupiers, scoring areas of the capital from “untapped” through to “truly established”.

It said for retailers and occupiers looking for immediate returns, Barking, Wembley and Nunhead ranked among the top London areas which were found to be “up and coming”.

Quintain, a company currently leading the outer London development trend, first bought into Wembley in 2002, and is working to create a new 8.8 million square feet commercial and residential district.

James Saunders, chief operating officer at Quintain, said: “When we first started working in Wembley Park, we were almost purely appealing to people who live and work in the surrounding area. Now, we are part of a wider movement of people and occupiers who are considering London’s outer boroughs as a location to live, visit and invest in, which is being driven by affordability and great transport links.”

Barking, meanwhile, will soon be home to a £250 million housing scheme after FBM Architects secured outline planning consent from the council.

The 850-home Gascoigne West Estate development, on a 2.4 ha site, will be situated near Barking town centre and include affordable housing as well as community spaces. A detailed planning application is expected in late 2018, with work expected to start in 2019.

Each location was analysed according to a range of variables, from housing affordability and public transport accessibility, to the availability of creative space, and food and beverage culture.

Cushman & Wakefield’s report named Peckham, Dalston, Wapping and Dulwich as the most “flourishing” areas of London.

It also said Southall, Brent Cross South, Cricklewood and Golders Green were “untapped” while Ealing, Chiswick, Hammersmith and Fulham were “truly established”.

Uxbridge, Harrow, Barnet and Finchley were “maturing” investment hotspots, the authors added.

In Brent Cross, Argent is building a 10 million sq ft new town centre with 6,700 new homes, office space, retail and leisure use.

Argent partner Nick Searl said: “[A] critical element will be the success of the offices and commercial activities generally. Bringing great businesses and thousands of people to work at Brent Cross South will not only shift perceptions of this part of London, it will also deliver the daytime economy that underpins the success of the ground floor shops and restaurants that will enliven the streets and create amenity for residents.”

DealMakerz thinks the focus on London’s outer boroughs is indicative of the fact that central London has become too expensive for occupiers in particular.

It follows reports that London’s suburbs could see a huge increase in housebuilding after Mayor Sadiq Khan announced he would relax planning rules that protect local character.

Plans published at the end of last year stated that the capital’s outer boroughs must build more homes over the next decade than there are in the entire city of Manchester.

A third of new housing will be built on small sites, including in back gardens and upward extensions of existing houses, apartment blocks and shops.

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