Developer Luxor Group has completed the freehold purchase of Barrow House in St Helens, an office building it intends to convert to residential.
The 34,500 sq ft building includes basement and ground floor commercial space and vacant offices on the upper floors. It was acquired from Barclays for an undisclosed sum.
Luxor plans to convert the upper floors into a residential scheme, including a rooftop garden terrace. The project will be completed in two phases as the developer looks to build on its conversion of the Tyrers building into Nicholson Lofts and the residential scheme across the road at Claughton House, now Nicholson House, which is nearing completion.
The first phase at Barrow House, named Nicholson Plaza, will contain three ground floor retail units and a basement gaming lounge, occupied by Barzookoid. The Laguna tanning salon will, like Barzookoid remain in place, while The Dean restaurant is to open in the units formerly occupied by Willowbrook in the New Year.
MD Productions has agreed terms to occupy the shopping arcade on Claughton Street to use as a dance studio.
Chief executive Paul Nicholson said: “We are delighted to complete the acquisition of Barrow House. This deal has been in the making for over 18 months with a complexity that required dealing with a variety of parties. The council have been extremely supportive in bringing this transaction to fruition.
“The building has so much potential due to its sheer size, but it will be a difficult build and take significant investment to make our plans reality. We are excited to press ahead with our residential plans which will offer yet more affordable, luxury accommodation in the town centre. We have already received enquiries from prospective tenants as a result of the overspill of demand from the last two projects.”
Nicholson added: “We are also passionate about keeping St Helens’ high street flourishing and the preservation and management of the basement and ground floor commercial units will ensure retail is at the heart of our plans. We have worked hard with the new tenants to bring their dream businesses to reality, including assisting with fit outs and rent-free periods to allow them to trade without the burden of paying rent.”