Manchester unveils £1.5bn bid for ‘shovel-ready’ schemes

The city council has included more than 60 priority projects in a huge pitch for Government funding, with council leader Sir Richard Leese calling on Whitehall to increase the budget that Boris Johnson set last week. 

The projects include the £1.4bn Mayfield regeneration and the £1bn Northern Gateway, as reported earlier this week, the permanent pedestrianisation of Deansgate, the ID Manchester innovation hub, First Street mixed-use scheme and an expansion of Didsbury Technology Park, among other projects either in construction or in the pipeline.

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The prime minister announced on Tuesday that a total of £900m would be made available to councils to support the development of “shovel-ready” projects, as part of his £5bn pledge to kickstart infrastructure and other schemes deemed crucial for the country’s post-pandemic economic recovery.

Johnson’s budget is some £600m shy of what Manchester City Council alone has argued it will need to help fund its list of eligible projects.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of the council, said in a statement: “We cannot play down the challenge we are facing around recovery from the Covid-19 outbreak. 

“The projects that we have put forward represent the city’s highest priority, shovel-ready projects that will give us the best footing for economic growth, while helping us address long standing socio-economic and environmental challenges.” 

However, the council added that it does not expect to receive funding for all of the projects it has earmarked as “shovel-ready” priorities. 

Highlights of the bid include:

  • £220m for the Northern Gateway regeneration project, proposing 15,000 homes across 383 acres
  • £120m for ID Manchester, a 4m sq ft mixed-use development at the University of Manchester’s former north campus
  • £61m for refurbishments at London Road Fire Station, Campfield on Liverpool Road, Albert Shed on Water Street and the Turing Institute at the University of Manchester 
  • £35m for a 100,000 sq ft advanced therapy and vaccine manufacturing facility at Wythenshawe Hospital
  • £30m for upgrades to walking and cycling routes in Chorlton, Fallowfield and the city centre
  • £27.5m for First Street, the office-led mixed-use scheme being developed by Ask Real Estate
  • £27.1m for public realm improvements at Lincoln Square, Piccadilly Gardens, The Factory and the Medieval Quarter
  • £23m towards the mixed-use redevelopment of Mayfield Depot
  • £11.5m for connectivity infrastructure at Enterprise City, part of Allied London’s St John’s district
  • £10m for the permanent pedestrianisation of Deansgate
  • £6m for the 40-storey St Michael’s tower, being delivered by a joint venture between Jacksons Row Developments, backed by ex-footballers Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs 
  • £4m for a 90,000 sq ft innovation hub in Hulme
  • £3m for a 60,000 sq ft expansion of Didsbury Technology Park to provide a net-zero carbon office building
Mayfield Car Park Visual

The redevelopment of Mayfield Depot is one project included in the bid

Confirmation of successful bids nationwide are expected as part of the Chancellor’s budget statement on 8 July. 

A report to the Manchester City Council’s executive ahead of a meeting this afternoon said that the projects put forward for funding would “ensure that the city plays its full part in the national economic recovery, by continuing its development as a forward-thinking global city that is able to reach its full economic potential.” 

Sir Richard Leese added: It’s important to show that Manchester remains an attractive place for organisations to locate and invest, which in turn guarantees a range of employment opportunities for our residents.” 

The council’s executive had a packed agenda for its meeting today. As well as signing off the funding bids, it was also expected to approve several regeneration frameworks including for parts of Ancoats, New Islington, Noma, St Mary’s Parsonage, and First Street. 

N08 First Street

The continued development of First Street requires £27.5m, according to the council

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