Regional property investment firm Palace Capital which own the Broad Street Plaza in Halifax has announced positive financial results despite economic uncertainty.
The firm is redeveloping a two-acre site that is a minute’s walk from York Railway Station within the city walls.
Described as the group’s flagship project, it will include 127 flats, 5,000 sq ft of retail/restaurant space, 35,000 sq ft of Grade-A office space and 5,000 sq ft of other commercial uses, located in four buildings around a landscaped central courtyard.
The scheme, branded the Hudson Quarter, will also include a new landscaped link from the train station, opposite the site, through to Toft Green and then onto Micklegate. The new office building will be first of its kind of this size to be built speculatively in York city centre for more than 20 years.
Palace Capital said it has made significant progress on the Hudson Quarter York development, with demolition and site preparation completed during the year and the scheme is launching later this month.
Funding has been secured with Barclays Bank and a £33.6m construction contract has been signed. The group said the fundamentals of the City of York are showing positive momentum and early occupier interest is encouraging.
Neil Sinclair, chief executive of Palace Capital, said: “The marketing suite for the apartments is virtually complete and June will see the first batch of apartments launched for sale.
“York was voted the best place to live in the UK in 2018 and was a regional winner this year. In the Nationwide House Price Index for the first quarter of this year house prices rose 2 per cent in Yorkshire whilst in London they fell 4 per cent, further emphasising the benefits of our targeted regional strategy.”
In Halifax, the group bought the Broad Street Plaza leisure scheme two years ago, which is home to a Pure Gym and a Vue cinema.
Palace Capital is looking for sites elsewhere in Yorkshire and has some smallholdings in Sheffield. The group made a pre-tax profit of £6.4m in the year to March 31, down from £13.3m the previous year.
Mr Sinclair said: “Although profit for the year is down on last year due to the fair value reductions compared to uplifts last year, adjusted profit before tax has increased to £8.9m from £8.4m, reflecting underlying rental growth from the portfolio.
“We are an ambitious and exciting real estate company which only had a market capitalisation of £108,000 in July 2010 and now has a portfolio valued at £286.3m so we have made considerable progress.
“Our portfolio structure and proactive approach to asset management has enabled us to continue to grow both income and capital values, building further on our strong track record.”
The firm is to convert to a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) on August 1 pending shareholder approval.