Socius, Railpen to develop £500m office scheme in Cambridge

Socius, Railpen to develop £500m office scheme in Cambridge

Socius, a developer of mixed-use places, has formed a partnership with Railpen, the investment manager for the £35 billion railways pension scheme, to develop a major new office scheme on Hills Road in Cambridge.

Botanic Place, which is adjacent to Cambridge Botanic Gardens, comprises an existing office building, Botanic House, the historic Flying Pig pub building, and an adjacent site with planning consent for a new £500m, 500,000 sq ft workspace scheme, designed by architects AHMM. The vision for the office scheme is that it will become the most sustainable and intelligent workspace in Cambridge.

Within its plans, Socius and Railpen are committed to preserving and upgrading the building that housed the once popular Flying Pig, which closed in early 2022, with the ambition of creating a vibrant new music venue for the community.

Socius has commenced community and stakeholder engagement with local residents, businesses and community groups and Cambridge City Council, and construction is expected to commence in autumn 2023.

Botanic Place will be the second collaboration between Socius and Railpen, with work due to start in 2023 on Devonshire Gardens, a £160m mixed use development with workspace, homes and a new public park close to Cambridge rail station.

Barry Jessup, Managing Director, Socius commented: “Cambridge is at the heart of UK innovation and has huge potential for growth but is impacted by an under-supply of high-quality workspace. Botanic Place will be a landmark commercial development that will harness Cambridge’s vast intellectual capital and align with its vision to achieve net-zero by 2030. We are very pleased to be working with Railpen again and look forward delivering long-term social and economic benefits in Cambridge.”