German fund manager Union Investment has bought into a speculative development project in Paris.

It has bought the 23,600sqm Grand Central development at Saint-Lazare station for its open-ended real estate fund UniImmo Deutschland.

The project is being managed by US private-equity investor The Carlyle Group, which plans to build a business centre on Europe’s second biggest railway station in Europe.

Completion of the project, which began in 2013 and is desgined Jacques Ferrier Architecture, is expected by the middle of 2019.

“Grand Central will be one of the most modern business centres in Paris,” said Tania Bontemps, president of Union Investment Real Estate France.

“It benefits from a location that is unsurpassed in terms of transport links.

“Due to the excellent letting prospects and our confidence in the project, we decided on a speculative acquisition without pre-letting and rent guarantees.”

Philip La Pierre, head of Investment Management Europe at Union Investment Real Estate, said: “Investment opportunities in the Paris real estate market are currently rather rare.

“Grand Central is one of the few commercial new build projects in the city. This development project is our first acquisition in the Île-de-France since 2012.”