Google London Office With Running Track Wins Approval

Google Inc., owner of the world’s largest search engine, won local government approval to build its new U.K. headquarters next to King’s Cross train station in London.

The Camden borough council unanimously approved the 85,800-square-meter (920,000 square-foot) building at a meeting late yesterday. The project on 2.4 acres (1 hectare) will have a swimming pool and a running track on the roof and space for as many as 5,000 workers, according to a filing to the borough.

Google expects to move into the building, which will be seven to 11 stories, in 2015 after it agreed in January to buy the land from King’s Cross Central LP, the Mountain View, California-based company said at the time. Construction is due to start at the end of this year.

A “significant proportion of the 5,000-plus staff would be new jobs,” according to the filing. Google will also move some of its workers from buildings it leases in the Victoria district and near the Tottenham Court Road tube station.

About 16 stores will also be built on the ground floor of the new building. Kings Cross Central will own the shops as part of the deal with Google, according to the filing.

The application for the site was made by Argent (King’s Cross) Ltd. London-based Argent is one of the owners of closely held King’s Cross Central LP, together with London & Continental Railways Ltd. and delivery company DHL. The companies are reviving the area as part of a plan to develop 67 acres of land by building 1,900 homes and enough office and retail space for 35,000 jobs.

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