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Transport for London cancels plan to move into the Shard

Transport for London has abandoned its plan to move into offices in the Shard at London Bridge and sold its lease agreement to the State of Qatar and Sellar Property Group.

Four years ago the Ken Livingstone regime at City Hall announced that it had pre-let 200,000 sq ft of office space at the Shard for the capital's transport authority.

At that time the prospects for the construction of the skyscraper were far from certain and the TfL deal helped the developers to secure funding.

Mr Livingstone said at the time that the Shard's London Bridge location made it a compelling proposition because it would put TfL "within my arm's reach" and would "unlock the regeneration of one of the most run-down parts of London".

Charles Stafford, TfL's director of group property and facilities, said of the sale: "This is an excellent deal for TfL and London, and has secured a multi-million cash premium which will contribute towards our established 5 billion efficiency programme to cut costs and secure investment in London's transport network.

"TfL secured a great deal for its lease agreement in the Shard in 2006.

"Since then rental rates have risen considerably and the deal we have negotiated with London Bridge Quarter reflects this."

A spokesman for London Bridge Quarter told Property Week: "This agreement enables us to position the Shard at the very top end of the London office market. Together, the Shard and London Bridge Place will deliver more than 1m sq ft of Grade A offices located on one of London's busiest transport hubs in a landmark building of the highest quality."

The precise terms of TfL's deal with LBQ are commercially confidential.

TfL will continue to work with Sellar Property Group in considering its options for alternative accommodation.

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