January 15, 2021
Fiera Real Estate (“FRE UK”) and Packaged Living are pleased to announce the purchase of Suffolk House in Cardiff. The 0.9 acre site comprising a two-storey former office building is located on Trade Street, in the south of Cardiff City Centre and five minutes’ walk from Cardiff Central train station.
FRE UK and Packaged Living intend to submit a residential planning application for c.300 Build-to-Rent (“BTR”) residential units and assume the role of developer. The site will also benefit from 3,000 sq.ft of commercial space, up to 5,000 sq.ft of amenity space and 50 car parking spaces.
Suffolk House is part of Cardiff’s advanced regeneration programme and is seen as central to the City’s plans to connect the City Centre with the increasingly popular Cardiff Bay area. Trade street is identified as the key pedestrian access route south from the city centre.
Cardiff is a rapidly growing, young university city which is becoming increasingly popular for investors in the BTR sector due to its economy, connectivity and demographics with numerous sites having recently been secured within close proximity to Suffolk House. The City’s ability to retain graduates from the local universities has created a larger than average affluent, young professional population which is currently under-served by professionally managed BTR product.
FRE UK purchased the site through the Fiera Real Estate Opportunity Fund V UK (“FREOF V”) in partnership with Packaged Living. This purchase is the sixth acquisition for FREOF V, the latest fund in Fiera Real Estate’s programmatic venture series with CBRE Global Investment Partners (“CBRE GIP”). FREOF V UK is targeting £250m of value add and opportunistic real estate transactions in the UK.
Packaged Living, the UK private rented sector specialist and part of FRE UK’s operating partner network has a multi-family development pipeline of over 2,300 apartments across several other cities including Newcastle, Manchester and Milton Keynes. It recently launched a single family housing platform with a target of developing and operating a nationwide portfolio of 5,000 single family homes over the next 5 years. Suffolk House is the second BTR scheme that Packaged Living has purchased through FREOF V, following the acquisition of Heyrod Street in Manchester consisting of 350 homes which is due to start on site this year.
Chris Button, Head of Value Add REIM at Fiera Real Estate commented: “We are delighted to be a part of Cardiff’s regeneration programme and bring much needed rental housing to the city. We are actively seeking similar sites in major urban locations.”
Ed Ellerington, Managing Director of Packaged Living commented: “Suffolk House is Packaged Living’s fifth city centre development in the UK and offers real potential to build the city’s most advanced rental community. Local Living at its best remains at the heart of both our single family and multi-family developments and we believe Suffolk House will embody this mantra.”