Making tracks for a better Metro | 06 February 08

NORTH law firm Ward Hadaway has been helping transport operator Nexus build a better Metro.

Computer impression of the completed Haymarket development

New look - a computer-generated image of the completed development at Haymarket Metro Station in Newcastle city centre.

The Newcastle-based legal practice has advised Metro operator Nexus on the multi-million pound deal to revamp the Haymarket station in Newcastle city centre.

The £22m programme will see the existing station transformed with improved passenger facilities and platforms and the construction of a four storey mixed use development incorporating shops, a bank and bar and restaurant facilities.

The scheme involves the close co-operation of Newcastle City Council and will include major highway upgrading and associated regeneration works to the Haymarket area.

The developer – 42nd Street (Haymarket Hub) Ltd, which comprises a joint venture between construction group Tolent plc, leisure group 42nd Street Realty Limited and developers Closegate – will undertake the development works.

Ward Hadaway advised Nexus on the numerous complex agreements between the different parties.

David Douglass, partner in the property department at Ward Hadaway, led the law firm’s multi disciplinary team on the project.

Lesley Fairclough, also a property partner at the firm, headed up the property lawyers involved in the transaction.

Mr Douglass said: “We are delighted to have successfully concluded the legalities for what will be a landmark development.

“This is in a key city centre site and the development will see much improved facilities for all passengers, as well as creating jobs both in the construction phase and once the mixed use development is completed and occupied.”

Ken Mackay, Director of Rail and Infrastructure at Nexus, said: "Haymarket is a key part of the first phase of our ambitious £600m plans for Metro Re-invigoration, transforming the existing station to meet the high standards and facilities future passengers will expect.

"Ward Hadaway played an important role in securing a deal that will deliver significant improvements for Metro passengers at minimal cost to the taxpayer, with the developer funding our investment in station facilities."

The station, which is used by six million passengers a year, will remain open at most times during construction of the new development.

Mr Douglass said: “The team at Ward Hadaway worked extremely hard to get the deal completed. The transaction was complex and crossed a number of different legal disciplines.

“The team included development, planning, construction and banking lawyers. It is through the combined efforts of all concerned that the transaction has reached a successful conclusion.”