May 28, 2013 / 9:14 AM / 6 years ago

Crown Estate, Canada's Oxford Properties sign $483 million London joint venture

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain’s Crown Estate has signed a 320 million pound ($483 million) joint venture with Canada’s Oxford Properties to redevelop London’s upmarket St James’s Market district, the two companies said on Tuesday.

The Crown Estate, which manages the Queen’s property portfolio, said the deal creates a 50-50 partnership in which each will own 150 year leasehold interests in two blocks located between London’s Regent Street and Haymarket district.

Oxford Properties is owned by Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System, one of Canada’s largest pension funds.

The scheme is part of the Crown Estate’s ten year plan to redevelop the St James’s Market area, and will provide 210,000 square feet of prime office and 50,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space once completed, the two companies said.

The Crown Estate is by law not allowed to take on debt and previously signed a joint venture with Norway’s $660 billion oil fund to finance the redevelopment of shopping belt Regent Street. It owns 4 million square feet of retail, office and residential space in the St James’s district.

($1 = 0.6622 British pounds)

Reporting by Brenda Goh; Editing by Neil Maidment

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