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BBGI completes a social infrastructure investment in London

BBGI Global Infrastructure has completed the acquisition of a 100% interest in a social infrastructure investment consisting of two recreation facilities and 100 affordable residential units across two sites in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.

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The public-private partnership project originally consisted of the design, construction, financing, operation, maintenance and rehabilitation of separate buildings: the major regeneration and refurbishment of the derelict Poplar Baths building into a modern first-class community leisure centre and the construction of the Haileybury Community Centre, Randall House (60 affordable residential units), Dame Colet Court (25 affordable residential units) and Baltonsborough Court (15 affordable residential units).

Construction was completed in 2016 and the concession runs until 2051. The asset is classified as availability-based under the investment policy of the Company. Availability payments are received from the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.

The historic Poplar Baths building, on East India Dock Road in London, was first redeveloped and opened in 1934 and remained a much-loved local landmark until its closure in 1988. The refurbished and restored facility now includes a 25m swimming pool, a learner pool, ‘vapour baths’, a Sports England standard sports hall, two studios for exercise classes, a gym and a rooftop multi use games area, whilst the historic features of this Grade II listed building have been protected and restored.

The Haileybury Community Centre, now a focal point for the local community, consists of a sports hall, a public viewing gallery, fitness & dance studio, rooms for art, IT, music and meetings, and a commercial grade kitchen to support ‘food tech’ training. It also features a new rooftop with a state-of-the-art multi-use games area and a new multi-purpose rooftop pitch.

The residential housing units were designed and built in compliance with best practices to ensure excellence in design quality, amenities and sustainability, including the Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4, the London Housing Design Guide, Lifetime Homes and Secure by Design.

London Borough of Tower Hamlets is responsible for the operation of the leisure centre and the affordable housing units. BBGI is not responsible for letting risk or responsibilities within the residential units or the community centre.

As per the arrangements between the parties, the specific purchase price is confidential but is between GBP 20 million and GBP 30 million. The consideration for the interest acquired has been funded from drawing upon the Company’s corporate revolving credit facility.

"We are delighted to complete this high-quality availability-based social infrastructure investment with strong ESG credentials. Our strategy is to remain disciplined and selective in our approach to acquisition opportunities by only investing in availability-based assets that also align with our ESG principles, and not in higher risk infrastructure asset classes”, said Co-CEOs Duncan Ball and Frank Schramm.