Ask/Realty open pre-let talks with MANCAT at Boddingtons

Manchester College of Arts and Technology is discussing a major pre-let at the former Boddingtons Brewery site in Manchester with joint venture partners Ask Developments and Realty Estates.

MANCAT and Ask/Realty today issued a joint statement saying that early stage discussions "over a possible location of substantial new educational facilities" were ongoing.

The news comes as MANCAT prepares to merge with City College Manchester to become the Manchester College on 1 August 2008.

MANCAT currently occupies 14 sites including Ask/Akeler's One Central Park while City College operates three bases. No detail was given over possible relocations from existing premises.

Peter Tavernor, former principal of MANCAT and new principal of the Manchester College, said: "We are currently in the process of developing the accommodation strategy for the new college and have now started to review the property holdings of both City College and MANCAT to ensure that all accommodation is of the same high standard. We are also in discussion with Ask and Realty Estate regarding land in Manchester city centre at the former Boddingtons Breweries site. These talks are at an early stage, but there are some ambitious plans for major developments in hospitality, leisure and facilities management."

Alan Burke, executive director of Ask Developments, said: "We can confirm we are in detailed and positive discussions with the college about accommodating them on the Boddingtons site. We expect these discussions to come to a conclusion in the autumn."

Ask and Realty Estates acquired the 7.4-acre site in 2006 with funding from HSBC.

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