Delayed £825m project expected to complete in 2021

Renzo Piano's Paddington Cube

Renzo Piano’s Paddington Cube

Work has finally started on Renzo Piano’s controversial £825m Cube development in Paddington.

A main contractor is expected to be named shortly.

Plagued with delays – and several court battles – the Sellar project on behalf of owners Great Western Developments will feature Piano’s 360,000sq ft 19-storey office building on the site of an old Royal Mail sorting office next to Paddington Station.

A new Bakerloo line ticket hall and entrances, 75,220sq ft of retail and restaurant space and a new 1.35 acres public square will also feature in the scheme.

Planning was granted for the development in 2016 after being radically redesigned from original plans for a 72-storey tower nicknamed the Paddington Pole, but work was further delayed as first Save Britain’s Heritage and then Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs the neighbouring St Mary’s Hospital, launched legal challenges against Westminster council’s consent.

Demolition of the old Royal Mail building is expected to be completed by the end of the year and construction will start in the first quarter of next year, with completion expected by the end of 2021.

Sellar chief executive James Sellar said: “Paddington Square will dramatically improve transport connectivity with a new Bakerloo line station and a new public space.

“With the arrival of the new [Crossrail] Elizabeth Line, Paddington will become one of the capital’s major transport hubs with direct fast links to Heathrow, the West End, the City and Canary Wharf.”