Exclusive: New owner for brutalist tower

Argyle House sold to infrastructure fund

King's stables road new image 2One of Edinburgh’s most controversial office blocks has been sold for £40 million to a London-based infrastructure company.

Daily Business understands that Equitix is to be unveiled as the new owner of Argyle House, a brutalist 1960s block in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle.

Equitix, an infrastructure fund, is acquiring the freehold on the 11-storey building from private equity fund Kennedy Wilson.

Argyle House (pictured behind the proposed development of King’s Stables Road) was opened in 1967 and is managed by Telereal Trillium. Equitix is believed to want it for the lucrative income stream on the 17 years left on the lease.

It has 220,000 sq ft of offices and 60,000 sq ft over five floors were let in April to Edinburgh University’s IT division, bringing occupancy to 80%. The technology incubator Codebase occupies 70,000 sq ft.

It is a B-listed building, regarded as an example of its era, but it has divided opinion, not least because of its location in the historic Grassmarket area of the old town.

The sale, to be completed on 13 June, is likely to put an end to any prospect of its detractors succeeding in having the building demolished and replaced with something more in keeping with that part of the city.

Fronting the north side, developers are planning a hotel, apartments and commercial units to replace nearby derelict former council buildings in King’s Stables Road which runs alongside the castle rock. There were hopes that Argyle House may have been included in the redevelopment of the area.

In April Equitix entered into a partnership with Atlantis, the tidal power company, to provide £500 million for a number of Scottish projects.


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