Christie responds to Paterson criticism

After a group of local residents launched a campaign against the proposed redevelopment of the Paterson Building, The Christie has argued its case for the 10-storey “world-class” cancer research project.

The “Rethink the Paterson” campaign put forward a letter this week arguing against the redevelopment of the site, which was ravaged by a fire in April 2017.

This will replace the existing Paterson Building with a 10-storey design by architect BDP, set to house 270,000 sq ft of research laboratories, consultant workspace, a biological research unit, and ground floor exhibition and education spaces.

However, local residents, backed by Didsbury West Cllr Greg Stanton, argued the scheme would be “inappropriate for a residential area” due to its height and scale, with Stanton stating it “should be rejected by both the council’s executive and planning committee”.

In response, The Christie has said it is “listening to and appreciates the concerns of local residents” but has put forward a point-by-point rebuttal of the campaigners’ claims, particularly around the size of the building, traffic impacts, and pollution.

In a statement to Place North West, a spokesperson for The Christie said: “The redevelopment of the Paterson building is an exciting and unique opportunity to build a world class research building in the heart of Greater Manchester that allows scientists, researchers and clinicians to all work side by side with access to patients.

“This is something that can only happen by building the centre at The Christie. The Christie and its partners The University of Manchester and Cancer Research UK – together making up the Manchester Cancer Research Centre – are listening to and appreciate the concerns of local residents in relation to the size of the building, air pollution and parking.

“The proposed height is 10 storeys plus a basement level. This scale is essential if the vision for Manchester to become a global powerhouse of cancer research and treatment is to be achieved, ensuring patients have access to the very latest treatments. Some of the floors will be stepped back from Wilmslow Road to minimise the impact, and our award-winning Green Travel Plan will continue to encourage staff to travel to work using alternatives to private cars.

“Recent staff travel surveys showed that many of the Paterson staff and scientists live locally and were walking and cycling to work. These same staff are currently commuting some distance to their current workplace at Alderley Park in Macclesfield which is not sustainable.

“The new centre will be home to approximately 780 staff. 350 of these are former Paterson workers that have been temporarily based at Alderley Park and at the Oglesby Cancer Research building. Approximately 375 staff who are currently based at The Christie hospital will be relocated to the new building and the only new recruits to Withington will be 55 new staff members.

“Assessments to date indicate that there will be no significant air quality effects during construction due to dust, plant, equipment or construction traffic or when the centre is operational.”

To bring the project forward, The Christie has proposed an addendum to its existing strategic planning framework, which was agreed in 2014.

This will allow the Trust to bring forward a planning application for the Paterson Building’s replacement, which is expected in the coming weeks. The addendum to the framework was signed off by Manchester City Council in March.

Interserve has been chosen as The Christie’s partner for the project through the ProCure22+ framework, and is working alongside subcontractor PP O’Connor on the demolition of the existing fire-damaged building.

The contractor is also providing initial design and technical work which The Christie said would “inform the redevelopment of the building”.

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…”a World Class Research building” Why would anyone obbject to that? This is exactly what we need in Manchester, not down at Alderley Park.

By Cornelius L

It doesn’t matter how much they kid themselves – this is not slap bang in the centre of a lovely, quiet leafy resi centre – is it.
It’s slap bang between two major arterial routes and, perhaps rather unsurprisingly, a hospital campus.

The scale of the development will have no diseranable impact upon them individuals in these residential areas anyway, certainly no more so than a development of the scale required would in any respect.

Nimbyism at it’s best in the UK.

By Daveboi

I can only apologies for my terrible attempt at the word discernible in my previous comment.

By Daveboi

It is actually quite run down around there in parts. Withington is nothing special.

By Elephant

Withy was good back when we had a Lib Dem council, now under Labour it had predictably gone downhill

By Peter d

Very few people dispute the great work that the Christie does. What has to be appreciated in the current debate about the Paterson rebuild is the effect that a building of the proposed size, irrespective of its use or purpose has on its area. If approved this will be the biggest building outside of the city centre built in the last twenty years. There is no equivalent to it in Chorlton, Levenshulme, Fallowfield, Didsbury or Burnage. Buildings of this size, over a quarter of a million square feet of floor space and 150ft high change dramatically the area they are built in. They effect the very feel of their surroundings, people’s sense of place, the actual climate around them and the essential character of the area they effectively take over, because their sheer size. I think people have been drip fed information about the proposed replacement for the Paterson because the promoters of the project are fully aware of the potential adverse impact of this massive building. Area like Withington are made up of hundreds of small buildings that are rebuilt incrementally over decades. Introducing buildings of the proposed size has never happened before and unstinting support for it is primarily because it is the Christie. People need to give equal consideration to the future of withington as a place as well as the purpose of this particular large scale structure. By all means bring in the research but in a building that reflects the host neighborhoods character and scale .

By George mills

Those people objecting won’t be doing so if they need the fantastic treatment the Christie provides.

By A Cynical

George Mills, that’s your opinion, not a fact, and I disagree completely. London can manage buildings of scale, why can’t Manchester?

By Dan

Brilliant, let’s try and put in place obstacles to a world class facility in Manchester. We all know what then happens, one of two things – a not fit for purpose substitute is built, or, it gets built in Cambridge, London or Liverpool and we miss a once in a lifetime opportunity to do something good.

As a Didsbury resident of 20 years I would welcome the proposed development and the people that it will attract to the area.
The objectors would soon disappear if they understood how awful it is for cancer patients to have to travel 2,3 or 4 hours to get their daily treatment. Treatment that isn’t available close to their homes, and travel costs that they have to bear themselves, often by people who can ill afford it. So before we complain about having it on the doorstep, have a good think about what is being moaned about.

I would also hazard a guess that the Christie was there long before most of the objectors moved in..

Definitely Nimbyism..

By evetsnave

The protesters do not have a problem with a new research facility! The issue is the height of it. It is too damn high for the
surroundings. Despite two arterial roads, this is a residential area and the proposed design is totally out of keeping with the locale. It seems the Christie’s plan is not even using the whole area of the current site, so why can’t they build it lower but wider instead?

By tom

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