MMU eyes ‘meanwhile’ use for Land Rover showroom

Manchester Metropolitan University has received consent to convert the vacant 16,400 sq ft former showroom in Hulme into “short-to-medium term” office space for its estates team, as the institution redevelops its property portfolio. 

The Estates & Facilities Department is currently housed within the John Dalton West and All Saints buildings in Manchester city centre, both of which are to be redeveloped under the university’s estates strategy.

Under the plans approved by Manchester City Council, MMU will relocate the department to the former Land Rover showroom on Birchall Way on a temporary basis.

Campus furniture being moved from buildings under redevelopment will also be stored at the former showroom, close to the Epping Walk Bridge on Princess Road.

“The proposals do not involve any changes to the external appearance of the existing buildings on the site,” according to MMU’s planning consultant Deloitte Real Estate. Bowker Sadler Architecture designed the project.

When the Estates & Facilities services can be rehoused permanently, the former Land Rover site will be redeveloped to form part of the Oxford Road Corridor, the masterplanned innovation district spanning 600 acres from St Peter’s Square to beyond Birley Fields in Hulme. 

Under the strategic regeneration framework, the showroom is identified as a longer term masterplan opportunity, reserved for education expansion or commercial floorspace as part of a mixed-use development. 

Car dealer Williams Group vacated the unit last year to move to a £41m showroom at TraffordCity, built by Caddick Construction.  

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