All eyes on Elephant and Castle:new homes in London's hottest Zone 1 regeneration zone

Elephant and Castle is being reborn with 2,500 new homes including a landmark skyscraper where all the apartments sold out off-plan, a smart leisure centre and a new university campus.

More than a decade after Southwark council agreed the redevelopment of a swathe of Elephant and Castle covering 170 acres, this determinedly ungentrified patch of Zone 1 is finally being reborn.

The grim Heygate Estate has been demolished, its site renamed Elephant Park, and developer Lend Lease is building about 2,500 new homes, including a landmark 37-storey skyscraper named One The Elephant.

Early indications are that buyers love the idea of a rejuvenated Elephant and Castle. One The Elephant was sold out off-plan in advance of its completion later this year, at prices between £320,000 and £2.5 million. Agent Garton Jones is offering a three-bedroom apartment for £1.7 million.

But new homes are not the only changes on the horizon. A smart swimming pool and leisure centre opens next year, and a new campus for the University of the Arts London will add some student buzz.




Transport for London is overhauling the area’s hideous central roundabout, while the Elephant and Castle shopping centre is to be redeveloped by Delancey, with 300,000 sq ft of shops and restaurants. Work is expected to start next year.

“The shopping centre really is the epicentre of the regeneration,” says Tom Floyd, sales manager at Winkworth. “At the moment, it is an eyesore, but as soon as people start to be able to see what is going to happen there, it is going to help the area massively.”

Smaller companies are already starting to invest in the Elephant, as it is known. Pub company Antic Collective — which owns Brixton’s Dogstar pub — has bought the rather sad-looking Elephant and Castle pub and plans to revamp it as a fashionable venue.

If the idea of an incredibly central location undergoing so much investment appeals, then there is a wide choice of new homes — but buyers would be wise not to ignore the area’s period housing and even its ex-local authority properties. Older properties are cheaper and might, in the long run, be a better investment, although maintenance costs need to be factored in.

For those who want the security of a new property at the heart of the regeneration, options include West Grove, the latest phase for sale at Elephant Park, featuring blocks ranged around courtyards. Prices start at £500,000.

Two Fifty One, by developer Oakmayne, is a 41-storey tower close to the Ministry of Sound. When complete at the start of next year, it will contain 335 new homes — 65 of them affordable and aimed at first-time buyers. About 100 of the private homes are still available, priced from £629,000 for a one-bedroom flat, £785,000 for two bedrooms and £1,092,000 for three bedrooms.

Base 17 is a mid-rise scheme by Hill, and its latest phase of 56 flats overlooking Nursery Row Park has launched. Prices start at £450,000 for a one-bedroom flat, and the development is part of the Help to Buy scheme, which means first-time buyers could borrow 40 per cent of the price from the Government, and would need to raise a five per cent deposit (£22,500).


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