Moda and Apache set sights high with Birmingham build-to-rent block

Moda Living and Apache Capital Partners have revealed plans for a £145m PRS tower in the centre of Birmingham aimed exclusively at the rental market.

The companies have acquired a 0.77-acre site just off Broad Street, and will lodge plans for a 37-storey tower, which will include 450 purpose-built flats for private rental.

The duo bought the site from Bloomcrest, a joint venture between Cordwell Property Group and West Midlands developers the Richardson brothers, who had previously planned a 40-storey block comprising a hotel and apartments on the site.

The Moda and Apache building, which will be one of the city’s tallest, will also have 35,000 sq ft of retail, leisure and office space and 30,000 sq ft of amenity space.

The site lies directly opposite Brindleyplace, Argent’s 1.2m sq ft mixed-use commercial scheme centred around the Birmingham canal.

“This site fits in perfectly with our strategy of targeting central locations in major urban areas, where we can deliver high-quality rental housing at scale to professionals let down by the buy-to-let market, while also supporting ongoing regeneration efforts,” said Lee Savage, UK development director at Moda Living.

The scheme is Moda and Apache’s first major project in Birmingham and one of the city’s largest post-Brexit vote property transactions.

Richard Jackson, co-founder and managing director of Apache, added: “Funding support from our institutional investors remains strong for our secured premium PRS development pipeline across prime regional UK cities that we will own and operate for the long term.”

The scheme will form part of the growing PRS market in Birmingham, and follows hot on the heels of Linkcity’s (formerly Bouygues’) forward sale of its scheme The Beacon to Rockspring in March.

Other fledgling PRS projects in the city include Sterling Property Ventures’ and Longharbour’s Great Charles Place development and LaSalle Investment Management’s Exchange Square.

Developer Moda and Middle Eastern-backed investor Apache joined forces in May 2015 and have since built up a pipeline of 5,000 units in the UK regions with a GDV of £1bn. Their most high-profile scheme to date is the 458-unit Angel Gardens scheme in Manchester, which Apache forward-funded to the tune of £130m.