Construction work is well underway at City Square House, the flagship 140,000 sq ft office building next to Leeds Station by developers MRP.

Design & Build Contractors, McAleer & Rushe, began construction in May 2021 and the first construction milestone has now been achieved with the erection of its first tower crane.

This landmark building in Leeds city centre will start to emerge as the steel superstructure rises from the ground. Completion of City Square House is planned for Summer 2023 and the opening will coincide with the completion of the extensive public realm improvement works at City Square.

Leading global law firm DLA Piper have signed a deal to take 83,000 sq ft of prime office space at City Square House in the largest private sector pre-let deal in Leeds in the past 20 years.

Eamon Fox, partner and head of office agency at global property consultancy Knight Frank in Leeds, who is advising MRP, commented: “It is tremendous to see this flagship building slowly taking shape, providing a very genuine cause to be optimistic about the commercial property sector in Yorkshire.

“City Square House is the iconic new office development that the Leeds market has been waiting for. It is in a prime position, just off City Square and next to Leeds Station, and the remaining available space of 55,000 sq ft will help to address the pressing need for quality Grade A office space in the city centre.

“City Square House will now join the Majestic, 1 City Square, 34 Boar Lane and Platform as four state-of-the-art office developments, which are a credit to the city of Leeds. They underline the fact that Leeds is now one of the most flourishing regional cities, not just in the UK, but in Europe,” said Eamon.

He added: “It is also fitting that DLA Piper, whose origins as a law firm in Leeds date back to 1764, have kick-started one of the most significant developments in the city so far this century.”

Angus Montieth, development director at MRP commented: “We have been quietly going about our business of building the best office building in Leeds with sustainability and wellbeing at the heart of its design. City Square House office will quickly take shape during 2022 and it will slot into place as the final piece of the City Square regeneration plan”.

Eamon explained: “The pandemic has transformed the ways of working. Businesses are working flexibly, they want an appealing office environment for staff to enjoy working collaboratively and the office should be an attractive destination. City Square House delivers on the environmental commitments businesses have made to their staff, customers and shareholders.

“The speculative development of City Square House was another telling reminder that the death of the office, because of the global pandemic, was a myth. I was fascinated – and reassured – to read the news that Google is backing a return to the office with an investment that will expand its UK capacity by 50 per cent and reinvigorate the work environment. The search giant is spending £730m and expects its staff headcount to rise from 6,400 to 10,000. It is buying one of the London sites, Central Saint Giles, in which it is currently a tenant.”

Eamon added Google’s confidence in the office as a viable and dynamic workspace was vividly underlined in Leeds where, apart from City Square House and 34 Boar Lane, superb new office developments included Globe Point, Trevelyan Square, Tailors Corner and 123 Albion Street.

“The Leeds office market is incredibly strong, whatever the doom-mongers might say. Just watch the deals roll in this year.”