More new flats and houses were built in central London last year than in any year since the 1980s, according to FPD-Savills. Strong overseas buyer interest, a high level of off-plan sales and growth of 24 per cent in the value of new homes has fuelled the boom, the FPD-Savills London Residential Development Survey March 1998 report shows. The average price of a newly-built home in central London was GBP324 (about $4,088) per square foot at the end of last year. More than 100 new residential developments were being marketed at the beginning of this year. A quarter were office conversions, concentrated mainly in the City of London and the Holborn/Midtown area, which lies in between the 'Square Mile' and the West End. Almost 400 potential developments for the supply of a further 23,000 homes are in the pipeline. With 40 offices currently being converted into apartment blocks, central London is becoming increasingly residential, according to Yolande Barnes, FPD-Savills research director and author of the report. This is causing something of a revolution in and around the City of London, an area which has been suffering de-population for decades and is well known for being deserted at night once office workers go home. Now shops, restaurants and bars are opening to cater for an influx of new residents. Following a year of strong growth in the value of newly-built homes, Ms Barnes said she expected 'the market [in 1998] to be more price sensitive than it was in 1997'. A fall-off in interest from Asia was being offset by demand from British and other international buyers. However, they bought fewer investment properties and were less likely to buy off-plan, which weakened the market. An area ranging from Hammersmith in the west, to Hampstead in the north, Docklands in the east and to Barnes in the south was analysed in the survey. Among the new developments is the Spitalfields project on the northern fringes of the City of London. A former fruit and vegetable market is being converted into flats by award-winning house builder St George. Heralded as 'the new Covent Garden', the site also includes shops, restaurants, galleries and bars. St George is marketing 73 one-bedroom and two-bedroom flats in its Bishops Court phase, with prices starting at GBP147,950 and GBP210,950 respectively. Estate agent Hamptons is promoting several projects in and around the City of London. These include Brody House, a converted textile warehouse close to Liverpool Street Station, where 31 apartments are on sale with prices ranging from GBP139,000 for a one-bedroom flat to GBP625,000 for a three-bedroom penthouse. Nineteen flats are being sold at the Bridgewater Square development on the City of London/Clerkenwell borders. Prices range from GBP127,500 for a one- bedroom unit to GBP305,000 for a three- bedroom apartment. At Globe View on the north bank of the River Thames in the City of London, 135 one-bedroom and two-bedroom flats are being built by Barrat, with prices starting at GBP130,000. A seven-bedroom apartment is also on offer at GBP435,000. The building features a seven-storey glass-covered atrium. Shrubs, foliage and a fountain are features on the ground floor.