Firm beats two others to role of development manager on what will be City’s tallest building

Stanhope has won the race to be development manager on the scheme to build the City’s tallest tower at 1 Undershaft, Building can reveal.

The firm, which is coming to the end of its work on Wilkinson Eyre’s 50-storey scheme at 8 Bishopsgate, has beaten pitches from 22 Bishopsgate developer Lipton Rogers and CO-RE, the firm behind the redevelopment of 120 Fleet Street. Stanhope declined to comment.

Designed by Eric Parry Architects, 1 Undershaft has planning but has been undergoing a significant redesign over the past year to bring it up to date with modern building methods and issues such as carbon emissions. Among those working on the job are engineer WSP and cost consultant Aecom.

1 Undershaft Eric Parry

Source: DBOX for Eric Parry Architects

How the consented scheme for 1 Undershaft currently looks. But such is the scale of the redesign, it is understood the job will need to be resubmitted for fresh planning

The current scheme was granted planning in November 2016 but Building understands the scale of the redesign means the proposals will have to be resubmitted again for full planning. This is likely to be around the middle of next year.

Over the summer, senior figures from Cheesegrater builder Laing O’Rourke, Multiplex and Mace met with top bosses from Singapore developer and client Perennial Holdings about building the tower.

The soundings are understood to have been a series of informal talks with the three over how they would construct what will be the Square Mile’s highest building which will stand at just over 300m.

Current tenant, insurance giant Aviva, is due to move out of the 1960s building by the middle of 2024 with Perennial and Stanhope then set to take control of the site.

No date has been given for when work might start although demolition of the existing tower, a 23-storey block designed in 1969 by GMW Partnership and built by Taylor Woodrow, is expected to take around a year meaning main construction work would probably not begin until late 2025.

Perennial is currently building a 50-storey tower called 8 Shenton Way in Singapore which is due to be completed in 2028.

But 1 Undershaft is significantly taller and will eclipse the 278m high 22 Bishopsgate, built by Multiplex, as the tallest in the City, putting it on a par with the Shard – built by Mace.

aviva tower

Source: Shutterstock

1 Undershaft will replace the existing building, the Aviva Tower (middle) designed in 1969 by GMW and built by Taylor Woodrow

Stanhope is already working on another planned tower scheme in the area – 55 Bishopsgate which is being masterminded by funder Schroders.

The scheme, which is set to be around 58 storeys, has been drawn up by Arney Fender Katsalidis, and Stanhope’s work involves readying it for planning with plans set to be submitted to the City of London Corporation in the first half of next year.

As well as 1 Undershaft and 55 Bishopsgate, two more towers are planned nearby at 55 Gracechurch Street, designed by Fletcher Priest, and KPF’s 70 Gracechurch Street.

A Stanhope team is developing the latter while Hong Kong firm Tenacity is behind 55 Gracechurch Street.