Google Strikes Deal for New $1.6 Billion U.K. Headquarters

The property development next to London's King's Cross is scheduled to be completed in 2016.

LONDON -- Internet giant Google has reached a real estate deal for a site here, which will house its new 1 million square foot site U.K. headquarters.

Google and the real estate firm said that the King's Cross building should be completed 2016. Financial terms weren't disclosed, but the Financial Times spoke of a $1.6 billion development. 

Google bought the new site from King's Cross Central, which oversees one of the British capital's biggest area redevelopment projects. The site is right next to the King's Cross train station and in a statement was described as "the best connected location in Europe."

King’s Cross Central is looking to revive the neighborhood by developing 1,900 new homes and office and retail space that could provide around 35,000 jobs.

"The move is a major boost to the transformation of King’s Cross and is one of the biggest ever commercial acquisitions in the U.K.," a joint statement said. "It confirms the importance of King’s Cross as one of the largest development schemes in London."

Google's current headquarters is in London's Victoria district.

"This is a big investment by Google. We’re committing further to the U.K. -- where computing and the web were invented," said Matt Brittin, Google's vice president for Northern and Central Europe. "It’s good news for Google, for London and for the U.K."
Construction on the new building is expected to begin late this year. It will set on top of cafes, restaurants and retail stores, the developers said.

The new Google headquarters is expected to be state-of-the-art and have a campus feel, according to Simon Allford of architecture firm Allford Hall Monaghan Morris.

“Working with Google is a special opportunity to create an innovative new headquarters of scale and significance that both builds on King Cross's rich tradition of heroic construction and contributes to the fulfillment of the development’s visionary master plan," he said. "The proposal for a campus within a building that engages with a new, yet historical piece of London is a very exciting one that we look forward to developing further."


Twitter: @georgszalai