UK railways pension scheme manager Railpen has acquired a 309,000sqft office development in the East of England from Pace Investments.

The £37bn (€42.4bn) investment manager has invested an undisclosed amount to acquire Botanic Place in Cambridge.

The development comprises the fully-let Botanic House, completed by Pace in 2013, and two new proposed office blocks that will be developed by Railpen.

The latest deal expands Railpen’s presence in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc where the manager already owns the Devonshire Gardens development in Cambridge and the Eastpoint Business Park in Oxford.

Anna Rule, the head of real assets at Railpen, said: “Botanic Place exemplifies Railpen’s two strategic objectives: to create clusters of prime assets in markets with strong demand from high growth sectors of the economy and, within those clusters, for our assets to set the standard for the future.

“Cambridge, and this asset specifically, meet these criteria and reflect our belief that ESG and financial outcomes are interdependent.”

Richard van Lente, senior asset and development manager at Railpen, said: “Botanic Place’s location, scale and environmental standards will make it the number one office address in Cambridge.

”That will translate into higher rents and better leasing terms, driving performance for our members across our whole Cambridge estate. This is a flagship asset for Railpen and the centre point of our growing ownership in the Oxford-Cambridge Arc.”

Johnny Vincent CEO at Pace Investments, said: “We have assembled this site over a long period of time and achieved a planning consent for a campus that enables the talent in Cambridge to enjoy a city centre location in a truly sustainable facility.

“I am delighted that Railpen shares this vision and we look forward to working together on this important Cambridge site.“

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