Legal & General is investing £65m (€82m) in the Newcastle Science Central urban regeneration project, delivering two office buildings in the northern UK city.
The insurance group’s main investment arm, Legal & General Capital, announced it is partnering with Newcastle City Council and Newcastle University to help build and finance the £350m development.
Rachel Dickie, head of urban regeneration at Legal & General Capital, said: “Providing an excellent match for our long-term money, this public-and-private-sector-partnerships model demonstrates that we can unlock major regeneration projects that support the economic growth prospects of the UK by closing the funding gap, as well as delivering strong financial returns for our shareholders and policyholders.”
It is understood that the two-office investment is likely to be followed by further investments in the development, though no details are yet available.
The offices will have 200,000sqft of grad- A space between them, Legal & General said.
Newcastle Science Central is planned as a 24-acre science and technology centre on the former site of Scottish and Newcastle Breweries.
There are plans to build 500,000sqft of office space and 450 homes on the site.
Nigel Wilson, chief executive of Legal & General, said the investment was more evidence of the power of “bulldozer money” to produce high-tech growth and jobs through regeneration in the North of England.
“Whatever the EU referendum outcome, we need growth in the UK – and this is the way to deliver it,” he said.
Legal & General said it plans to invest £15bn in UK infrastructure, direct investments and urban regeneration projects, and has already invested over £7bn.