HMRC have made the record books in Wales, for agreeing the largest office deal ever seen in Wales.
HMRC will move to a new headquarters in the centre of Cardiff - at the heart of a new public sector hub that will employ 4,000.
HMRC, which currently has its main tax office in Wales in the Llanishen area of Cardiff, has signed up to a new 266,000 sq ft building in a major pre-let deal which marks the next phase of development at the Central Square regeneration scheme in the centre of the capital.
WalesOnline reports that it is scheduled for completed in late 2019, with HMRC moving into its new offices from 2020.
The 12 storey building will be known as 6 Central Square. It will be built by construction firm Robert McAlpine. However, there is the small matter of planning consent for the £100m project. A determination is expected next month.
The move will allow HMRC to sell its existing site in Llanishen for redevelopment, potentially for a housing led regeneration scheme. Some 3,600 HMRC staff (full-time equivalent) will be based in the HQ.
HMRC has agreed a 25-year lease for its new building at Central Square. It is understood there is no break clause and the rent - starting at around £16 a sq ft per annum - will be subject to rent reviews based on the then retail prices index measure of inflation every five years.
HMRC is also forward committing £20m to the fitout of the building.
Once completed the building's ownership with transfer to L&G's pension arm - for what is a prized investment asset, due to the strong covenant provided by a government organisation over 25-years with no break clause.
Minister for Government Resilience and Efficiency, Caroline Nokes, said:
“This Government is committed to delivering the best quality public services in every corner of the UK, and today’s announcement is an important step towards that.Let us trust that the rent that HMRC pays is "reasonable" when compared to similar properties/locations. Let us also trust that the building remains fit for purpose for the expected 25 year rental period!
This new lease is great news for Cardiff, and will deliver a range of benefits to people in Cardiff, from improved public space and transport to better access to the Principality Stadium from the station.”
Tax does have to be taxing.
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