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Grand designs: DLA Piper to move City operation to Cameron McKenna’s old office

Seeking to expand its office space in the City, DLA Piper has signed a lease to move into CMS Cameron McKenna’s old London base at Mitre House.

DLA Piper is planning to move out of its offices in 3 Noble Street (pictured) and 1 London Wall and reassemble at Mitre House once refurbishments are completed. Plans are to  expand the building by two floors providing 201,000 sq ft of office space.

The proposed move will give DLA Piper 50,000 additional sq ft in the City with it currently holding 110,000 sq ft at 3 Noble Street and 40,000 sq ft at 1 London Wall. With leases expiring on its two current properties in 2019, the firm is hopeful that the developer, Mercer Real Estate, gains planning permission so that it can move in.

Mercer Real Estate submitted new plans to refurbish Mitre House, 160 Aldersgate Street last week, after more than 100 objections from current residents. The majority of complaints centred on the increased height of the building, with Barbican residents concerned about a loss of daylight. Some also mentioned the building’s proposed roof terraces, fearing that there would be additional noise nuisance from partying.

The latest planning application states: ‘The evolution of the design has been informed by a rigorous process of public consultations with local stakeholders and meetings with the City of London Planners.’

A spokesperson for DLA Piper told Legal Business: ‘We have signed a lease and we do intend to move there but it’s subject to planning permission. It’s going to be a bigger office.’

In a recent survey into law firms in London, property advisor CBRE found that 83% of City firms are seeking to cut their rental costs. The research also discovered that the area occupied per fee earner across the 100 biggest firms in London has shrunk by 5% to 490 sq ft in the past year while it found that office space for partners across these firms cost, on average, £22,400 in 2014.