Canary Wharf, Qatar Win London Shell Centre Project Approval

Canary Wharf Group Plc and Qatar’s sovereign-wealth fund won approval from Communities Secretary Eric Pickles to build almost 900 homes and about 75,000 square meters (800,000 square feet) of offices at Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s London headquarters on the banks of the River Thames.

Construction on the project in the city’s Waterloo district will begin later this summer, Canary Wharf Group and Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Co. said in a statement today. Pickles asked to review the plans in September, saying the development may affect views of the Parliament area on the opposite side of the river.

The 1.45 million-square-foot project will have eight new buildings, including 877 homes, and will retain the 27-story Shell Centre tower, according to the statement. Construction will take about six years and allow Shell to move all 4,000 of its London-based staff to the same location for the first time.

“The project will deliver many significant local benefits with new jobs and employment programs, hundreds of new homes including much needed affordable housing, together with new open spaces and a park,” George Iacobescu, chairman and chief executive officer of Canary Wharf Group, said in a statement.

Songbird Estates Plc owns a 69.3 percent stake in Canary Wharf Group, according to the company’s website.

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