Hines, alongside its partner Cale Street, has agreed to invest $590 million to acquire and develop Unione Zero, the first parcel of a mixed-use development in Milan, Italy.
Hines will serve as the project’s strategic advisor and development manager, while Prelios Group will be the fund manager for the first plot investment for Unione Zero. Hines and Cales’ investment will be used to develop approximately 2.6 million gross square feet in the first phase of construction that’s set to begin in 2021, subject to securing licenses and permits and completing remediation work.
Hines’ investment kicks off Milanosesto S.p.A.’s overall mixed-use project designed by Foster + Partners. The development will stretch 16 million square feet and include residential, office, retail and hospitality space. Located in the northeast quadrant of Milan’s metro area, the development also calls for the green spaces spread over 111 acres, including the creation of one of the largest urban parks in Italy’s Lombardy region.
Mario Abbadessa, a senior managing director and Italy country head for Hines, said in prepared remarks that the area has a strong industrial tradition but had been inactive for more than 20 years. In redeveloping the area, the project will be built with environmental and social sustainability standards in mind.
Revitalizing Italy’s neglected areas
According to Hines, the acquisition of Unione Zero adds to the company’s investment strategy in Italy of redeveloping abandoned or unused areas into urban communities meant for an intergenerational mix.
Earlier this year, Hines acquired a former racing track and sports complex in Milan for approximately $384 million. The company broke ground on the project in May to redevelop the space into a residential-led mixed-use project that would reclaim roughly 1.6 million square feet in an unused part of Milan. In March, the company also acquired the site of the former Municipal Theatre in Florence, Italy, with plans to develop the parcel into a high-quality apartment community of one-, two- and three-bedroom units.