The future of Manchester revealed: A vertical village, new stations, hundreds of new flats and even more skyscrapers.
As leaders unveil their city centre vision for the next five years, we show you how it could look…
Town hall bosses are on Wednesday agreeing their new masterplan for the city centre – a catalogue of ambitious developments for the next five years.
They include billions of pounds worth of new neighbourhoods, mostly scattered around the northern and southern fringes of the existing city centre, as well as new skyscrapers and upgrades to a string of attractions, transport links and public spaces.
We have created this interactive map so you can see what’s in store – plus a rundown of some of the key plans below.
St John’s will be sandwiched between Spinningfields and the Museum of Science and Industry, in the heart of Manchester city centre.
The scheme – predicted to be worth £1.35bn when complete – will replace the Old Granada Studios site and promises to be the new neighbourhood of enterprise, culture and living.
Its centrepiece – more details of which were announced this week – will be the £110m Factory Theatre, announced by the Chancellor last year. But it could also see six new interlinking towers, potentially bigger than the Beetham.
A ‘vertical village’
A ‘vertical village’ could be created as part of the St John’s neighbourhood above.
The vision was revealed by Mike Ingall, boss of property firm Allied London, at the MIPIM property convention in Cannes earlier this year.
“The vertical village is an idea, he said at the time.
“It might not be realistic but who knows. You have got to be bold and push the boundaries of living and that is what we are trying to do.”
Oxford Road, Victoria and Piccadilly stations are being revamped over the next two to three years under upgrades to train links through the city.
But council chiefs don’t want to stop there.
At Piccadilly they are planning to redevelop the adjacent Mayfield site – a huge plot that has so far not been regenerated – into new shops, apartments and offices, as well as finally sparking the overhaul of nearby London Road fire station.
And at Oxford Road they hope to link another mixed-use development – which leaves the future of the Cornerhouse building as yet unclear – with nearby First Street.
And next to Victoria station, a new area dubbed ‘New Victoria’ is set to be overhauled by developers Muse, who want to build three new tower blocks.
A flagship development for town hall chiefs, the First Street site had lain dormant for some years during the recession, but has seen the HOME arts centre and a new hotel open their doors in recent months.
But the town hall doesn’t want to stop there.
Its latest masterplan for the area aims to see it expand south, as well as potentially west, onto the Little Peter Street car park, which they believe could be ripe for residential development.
They say demand for shops and offices has soared in the city since the economy began to pick up.
The nearby Great Jackson Street area – bounded by the Mancunian Way and Chester Road – is earmarked for a similar mixed-use overhaul.
The £150m Kampus scheme will be centred on hidden-away Little David Street, near the Gay Village, which is currently gated off and has fallen into disrepair.
The 2.3-acre site currently backs onto the NCP Minshull Street car park at one end, and Chorlton Street – between Canal street and Manchester Metropolitan University’s Aytoun Street Campus – at the other.
And there are plans afoot to re-open Little David Street and make it the centrepiece of this new hip area of the city.
The vibrant hub would include 500 apartments, hotels and leisure space, as well as artisan bars and independent restaurants.
Even more skyscrapers
A narrow, triangular plot of land off Deansgate Locks will house an ‘unashamedly modern’ 27-storey apartment block – complete with a 90ft high advertising screen.
The ‘Axis’ tower will contain 174 apartments and create a high-rise neighbour for the Beetham Tower, currently the tallest building in the city.
It will be wedged into the small plot of land bounded by Deansgate Locks, Albion Street and Trafford Street.
The second city tram crossing / St Peter’s Square
By 2017 trams are set to start running between Lower Mosley Street, through St Peter’s Square, down Princess Street, along Cross Street and Corporation Street and into Manchester Victoria.
As part of the project, the existing St Peter’s Square stop will be relocated and expanded from two platforms to four and the Deansgate-Castlefield stop is also being expanded.
Plans for Number 2 St Peter’s Square – a new office block funded by the Done brothers – are also in the pipeline, while the cenotaph has already been moved to nearer the town hall.
Hundreds of new apartments in Ancoats
Here is how a £30m eight to 14-storey tower of 134 apartments on Great Ancoats Street would look.
Housing developer Mulbury Homes has submitted the vision with the apartments ranging from 400 sq ft studios through to 900 sq ft three-bedroom apartments.
Meanwhile more than 300 new apartments will also be built in New Islington as part of a 10-year deal between the town hall and Manchester City’s Middle-Eastern owners.
It will see new apartments built on New Union Street, north east of the city centre and in the Grade II*-listed Murrays’ Mills.
They form part of a wave of housing planned by the council and Manchester City’s owners Abu Dhabi United, who signed a £1bn landmark deal last year.
This £85m Ordsall Chord development would link the two stations for the first time with a new rail bridge over the Irwell.
Planners say it would allow more trains through central Manchester, faster links to northern cities and improved access to Manchester Airport.
The project was due to be completed in 2017 but is currently delayed due to a ‘last ditch’ legal objection from a former Network Rail consultant.
A large tower block with 450 apartments could be built in the city centre as part of the £800m NOMA scheme, which largely stalled during the recession.
Dubbed Angel Gardens, the development will sit next to the new Co-op building and will include a 36-storey tower housing apartments, shops, cafes and bars.
The wider NOMA project will see scores of offices, hotels, shops and green spaces developed in a move expected to create thousands of jobs. It is being delivered by a joint-venture partnership between The Co-op and Hermes Investment Management.
In recent months the council has announced embryonic plans for the ‘New Cross’ area on the other side of Oldham Road, which it sees as ‘a more mature version of the Northern Quarter’.