MSP Oxford Road office approved

Bruntwood's Manchester Science Parks has secured planning permission for a 60,000 sq ft innovation centre on Oxford Road, with Project Digital rumoured to be lined up as a pre-let tenant.

The building will be known as Heart of the Park, and is part of MSP's expansion plan to triple the Oxford Road Corridor campus from the current provision of 350,000 sq ft to 1m sq ft of space by 2018.

The proposed development is a four-storey building at the location of an existing surface car park off Pencroft Way. The offices will include a range of hub facilities on the ground floor including a café, meeting rooms, conferencing facilities, common working areas and break-out space.

The planning report submitted in May by Deloitte described a potential 28,700 sq ft pre-let deal with "an international technology company" which was looking for European headquarters and would act as an "anchor" tenant for the site.

Further potential pre-lets are also expected of 7,000 sq ft to a biotechnology research and development firm and 5,000 sq ft to an IT development company.

Manchester Science Park was confirmed as one of the 30 locations across the region for Project Digital in August 2012, alongside the Hive in Manchester's Northern Quarter, Orange at MediaCityUK and Riverside on New Bailey Street.

Further development plans for the Oxford Road site also include expansion space for Qiagen, an existing occupier of Skelton House, in the form of a re-configured building that would provide a total of 70,300 sq ft of floorspace in two phases.

Rowena Burns, chief executive of MSP said: "The key to success for the corridor, for MSP and for Manchester lies in the power of the partnerships between our knowledge institutions, collaborations with healthcare providers and industry and the willingness of our public sector partners to reach out and become part of an economy which will be driven by open innovation."

BDP Architects designed the office, while Deloitte Real Estate provided planning advice.

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