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Stobart Estates, the property arm of Eddie Stobart’s road haulage business, has appointed former Prologis chief Alan Curtis's Curtis Real Estate to advise on its real estate portfolio, with a specific remit to help bring forward 1.4m sq ft of industrial at its Stobart Park in Widnes, CoStar News can reveal.

Curtis Real Estate, the consultancy business that Curtis set up with his son Neil in 2008, has been appointed to advise Stobart Estates, with a specific focus on expanding the delivery options around the 70 acre Stobart Park in Widnes.

Curtis Real Estate will work closely with Cushman & Wakefield and Jones Lang LaSalle, the joint agents on the project.

The rail-connected site has a fully operational rail freight terminal, provides easy access to the M56, M6 and M62 and benefits from planning consent for 1.4m sq ft in a range of unit sizes.

Tesco has already taken two units totalling 528,000 sq ft at the park.
It is thought that Curtis will focus on working up a detailed consent for part of the site.

Richard Butcher, CEO of Stobart Estates, said: “With Alan’s unparalleled experience within the ‘big shed’ market as a result of his time with Asda, Gazeley Properties and latterly at the head of ProLogis during its meteoric growth until his retirement in 2008, it means that Stobart Estates now has all the tools it needs to deliver in this world class distribution location.”

Alan Curtis said: “My involvement with Stobart Estates allows me to bring my delivery abilities, honed over many years in a highly competitive industry, to one of the country’s leading businesses. The benefit of being located at Stobart Park, 3MG, Widnes has already been jumped upon by Tesco which has 500,000 sq ft of accommodation now operational and with the backing of the wider Stobart business we are now able to accommodate occupiers’ needs over unit sizes from 200,000 sq ft up to almost 1m sq ft.

“I am delighted to be working with the Stobart team and its agents, Cushman & Wakefield and Jones Lang LaSalle, on what will I am sure will be one of the more exciting projects within my career.”

Mark Webster, Head of National Logistics & Industrial at Cushman & Wakefield, said: “In a market so constrained in terms of supply, the addition of Alan Curtis to the Stobart Park scheme, and the years of experience that he will bring, will ensure that future occupiers at the scheme will have 100% certainty in terms of delivery.”

Former Prologis UK managing director Alan Curtis retired from the industrial giant in 2008 and subsequently set up Curtis Real Estate with his son Neil.

Its first scheme has been built out in partnership with the Northern Ireland Local Government Superannuation Committee, advised by LaSalle Investment Management, on a seven-acre site at White Hart Lane in Tottenham. It comprises 140,000 sq ft with over 50% now let to tenants such as Screwfix and Selco.

The group has also formed a joint venture with Holden Property to develop a 100,000 sq ft distribution unit on a five-acre site in Thrapston, Northamptonshire.

Curtis is one of the industrial world’s best-known developers. The first part of his career was spent in Local Government before he joined Asda and its property subsidiary Gazeley in 1987. He left to join John Cutts’ Kingspark in 1997.

Prologis subsequently bought Kingspark and Curtis became managing director of the group in 2000.

Stobart Park -  Mersey Multimodal Gateway Widnes
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