21 November 2010 – The Sunday Times
The billionaire Reuben brothers are set to build a tower in west London to rival City landmarks such as Swiss Re’s Gherkin for dominance of the capitals skyline, writes oliver shah.
Simon and David Reuben, who are worth £5.5 billion according to The Sunday Times Rich List, have submitted revised plans for a 41-storey residential skyscraper at their Paddington Basin site on Westway. Nicknamed the Cucumber, 1 Merchant Square will be 460ft tall – almost as high as the Gherkin – with space for 222 apartments. The Reubens plan to put a 90-room boutique hotel on the lower floors and provide a roof bar for the public.
European Land, the brothers’ joint venture with the property developer Pearcroft, hopes to complete the Cucumber by 2016 providing planning permission is granted. The tower will be the final flourish on European Land’s section of the Paddington Basin site, which also houses projects by Development Securities and Derwent London.
The Basin comprises 2m sq ft of office, retail and living space. Marks & Spencer and Vodafone are among the blue-chip companies that have moved their headquarters to the site.