Redevelopment in Bryanston
A major R795-million Knightsbridge redevelopment is being undertaken at the Knightsbridge Manor office park in Bryanston, Johannesburg, to create a P-grade and leading-edge Green Star SA rated office complex.
The three-phase redevelopment of the prime located office park by the Emira Property Fund will more than triple in size to 29 352m2 for GLA office space. As part of the landmark project, Emira is renaming the park Knightsbridge. The Knightsbridge development, located in Sloane Street opposite the Didata Campus, began in November 2015 and is being undertaken in phases with the first of seven new buildings set to be complete in May 2017. Originally built in the mid-1980s, Emira acquired Knightsbridge Manor in 2003. Despite cosmetic refurbishments, the park’s buildings have dated and are attracting B-grade rentals in an area characterized by A-grade and P-grade offices. Geoff Jennett, CEO of Emira Property Fund, comments: ‘Our ground-breaking redevelopment of Knightsbridge supports Emira’s strategy of significantly increasing the value, attractiveness and competitiveness of this excellently-located property.’ The project is portfolio enhancing. In addition, the entire office park is designed to achieve a 4-Star Green Star SA rating from the Green Building Council South Africa, supporting Emira’s principles of responsible investment. Jennett reports that Emira’s Knightsbridge development responds to demand for offices in the Bryanston area. It also leverages the park’s prime location in this growing business hub. Being on Sloane Street, one of Bryanston’s key arterial roads, Knightsbridge has quick access to the N1 highway. The intersection of Sloane Street and William Nicol Drive will also be upgraded with a positive impact on motorists. Jennett explains: ‘While Emira initially considered an upgrade for the park, it quickly became clear that its complete demolition and redevelopment would be a much better option to boost its value and performance.’
The redevelopment will increase its size by a massive 19 334m2, from its current 9 884m2, and sufficient power has been confirmed for the site. ‘Bryanston is fast becoming the preferred alternative to Sandton for blue-chip businesses and large A-grade and P-grade office users,’ says Jennett. Indeed, Bryanston is the fourth largest office node in Johannesburg after the CBD, Sandton and Midrand. It has relatively high office occupancies. According to SAPOA, Bryanston’s office vacancies were 7.2% for Q4:2015, compared with a national average of 10.5%. P-grade office vacancies are at a low 1.7%. It is also an area that is upgrading and developing, especially around Nicolway Bryanston shopping centre, Ballyclare Drive and Main Road.
New offices are quickly finding tenants.
Knightsbridge business park will be defined by quality design, materials and finishes, and will feature standby generators and back-up water supply. This will be complemented by resource-efficient stateof- the-art mechanical and electrical installations, including a chilled water system, lighting sensors, access control, CCTV, and rainwater harvesting for irrigation. It will also have the built-in capacity to place PV panels on the roofs and offer its users generous parking. While ideal for large corporates, the buildings are designed with flexible floorplates to provide the best size for different kinds of businesses.
Emira Property Fund Geoff Jennett, CEO T +27 (0) 11 028 3100