American insurance firm, WR Berkley, is soon to file a planning application for a new custom built skyscraper in the City of London designed by the local office of Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates.
The scheme will take in several sites including 52-54 Lime Street and 27 Leadenhall Street creating a single parcel of land 2.2 acres in size. It was accumulated over the period of several years by real estate company Prupim, who sold it to WR Berkley last year for £38 million. Both of those addresses sit near to the firm's existing headquarters at 40 Lime Street.
Although there are few details of the scheme, it is expected to be about 40 storeys tall - this could translate into a height of perhaps 165 metres making it comparable to 20 Fenchurch Street.
The area in and around Lime Street and Lloyds of London, has long been a hub for insurance companies who benefit from the advantages of clustering in the same space.
Insurance companies have been notable in recent years in driving much of the development of the City of London's skyline. Since 2000, Swiss Reinsurance has taken 30 St Mary Axe (the Gherkin), the Willis Group has taken the Willis Building, and more recently Aon signed a lease to be the anchor tenant of the Leadenhall Building (the Cheesegrater) whilst Markel plumped for the Walkie Talkie at 20 Fenchurch Street.