Work on Penzo Piano-designed scheme near London Bridge station will start next year 



Cube developer Sellar has put firms on notice that it will begin the search for a contractor in the next few months for its latest scheme to be designed by architect Renzo Piano.

As well as the Cube, which is officially known as Paddington Square, Piano also designed the developer’s most famous job – the Shard.

Mace built the Shard, marking its entry into main contracting, and the firm has been hired to build the Cube which carries a £350m pricetag.

Mace also worked on another Sellar and Piano scheme – the News Building which sits in the shadow of the Shard at the Shard Quarter complex – and is currently working on the pair’s residential scheme at the site called Shard Place

Now Sellar has submitted plans to Southwark council for a £200m development featuring two more buildings designed by Piano near London Bridge station.

Sellar will award a single contract worth around £100m for both buildings early next year, with construction expected to start at the end of 2020 and last 22 months.

James Sellar, chief executive of Sellar, said it had also yet to decide on the type of construction contract it would use and will start speaking to contractors at the end of summer.

Sellar said he expected Mace to bid the job but added: “We will have to see who has the best ideas, cost and team.”

He said the firm would be speaking to other firms as well although one potential bidder told Building: “Mace does a lot of their jobs so they’ll need to convince me bidding is not a waste of my time.”

No decision has been made about whether the buildings should be built in sequence or simultaneously but Sellar said it would like to use pre-fab and dry construction methods as much as possible.

Arup is already working as structural, MEP and fire engineer.

One building will stand at four and nine storeys, while another will run up to 16 storeys and incorporate the façade of a Victorian century warehouse – which was used by Sellar as a loading bay for construction of the Shard.

The buildings will be located on Bermondsey’s Vinegar Yard and will have a combined area of 160,000ft2, with retail space at ground level with office space above.

They were originally designed to be taller, with the warehouse building standing at 27 storeys. But the height was reduced after consultation with local people and the council.