We’re in the planning phase of this £1bn mixed-use scheme, reports Morden Wharf Development Manager Fergus Pryor. The scheme will take up to 10 years to deliver. However, the property is held on a leasehold basis so in the meantime we have a £1m rental liability.
Hands-on asset management isn’t just about helping the bottom line at Morden Wharf, it’s also creating a sense of place for the first time.
To overcome this and to start creating a sense of place, we’ve done some intensive asset management on the light industrial buildings there, taking them from 0% occupancy to 100% occupancy in three years. It was a pretty ugly industrial site – now, we have more than 400 people working here.
Some of the tenants we’ve welcomed to the site include a rocking chair maker and a waste to energy provider. We also have the art manufacturing company, MDM, on the site, whom we have built a really strong relationship with. They produce huge artworks for artists such as Anish Kapoor.
In the meantime, a chap called Uwe (pictured above) recently came along and started doing 65 lunch covers a day at the site, from a van – we got to know him, and have now built a cafe for him to give him a more permanent presence on the site, which is of benefit to existing tenants.
Taken together, the changes create vibrancy and a sense of place on the site while we go through planning, bringing valuable footfall and reintroducing Morden Wharf as a destination rather than an empty space.