Union Living Towers
The two towers would occupy a site Vita bought from Allied London c.Our Studio)

Application in for Vita’s 36-storey St John’s tower

Dan Whelan

The developer is progressing the second of its two towers on the Water Street site previously owned by Allied London, a 250,000 sq ft building containing 374 apartments. 

Vita has already submitted an application for a 32-storey tower comprising 388 co-living apartments as the first scheme under its Union Living brand, and Bam is lined up as lead contractor. 

Now, it has submitted an application for a 36-storey tower at the site in the St John’s area of Manchester city centre.

Although four storeys taller than its neighbour, the proposed second building provides fewer flats due to the fact that three floors are given over entirely to 21,500 sq ft of co-working space, according to the application lodged with Manchester City Council. 

Shared cluster flats of two, three and four bedrooms will make up around 80% of the residential offer with the remaining 20% given over to studio apartments.

Deloitte is planning consultant and Denton Corker Marshall is the architect.

Vita bought the site for the first tower within the Enterprise City development zone last May, after Allied London had won consent for two 36-storey towers to be named Dime and Nickel in 2017. It had an option to buy the second site but a sale has not yet been finalised. 

Enterprise City falls within the St John’s regeneration zone, which is undergoing a £1bn revamp courtesy of Manchester Quays, a joint venture between Allied London and Manchester City Council. 

Major developments being brought forward at Enterprise City include Factory and Manchester Goods Yard, which is due to complete next February. 

Union Living Towers 2

Vita’s co-living towers as seen from Castlefield Bowl (Credit: Our Studio)

Your Comments

Read our comments policy here

Is this really the best they can come up with? Manchester is suffocating with these ugly square blocks, it’s so painful to watch

By Anonymous

‘Walking in a Bernstein wonderland………..’ Deloitte + Vita + MCC = get the materials ordered!

By Bert

The design does look very similar to the Moda Living block at the top of Shudehill

By Bradford

Awful. The Nickel and Dime designs were far better

By Steve

I don’t mind the design, but surely they could do something more creative for what intends to be such a prime and unique location?

By Anonymous

We are becoming a second rate city with architecture like this.

By Acelius

wow (not in a good way)

By Anonymous

Poor and boring

By Elephant

Reminds me of Liverpool’s MODA tower currently under construction

By Anon

isn’t the current situation just confirming that Co-Living is not likely to be the home of choice for many. I get it in super prime Cities like London and NYC where affordability and space are really limiting but do we need these micro flats in Manchester? What would happen in the current circumstance with all the co-living space?? Suspect funding these will be difficult.

By Brian

Wrong envelope for the building form. Looks like the laundry block at ADX Florence.

Brian, the Covid-19 conditions in which we live will blow over and co-living won’t take the knock we think it will.

By North by North-West

Agree with ‘Steve’. I was actually excited by the Nickel and Dime designs. These look like the poor uglier and cheaper relation executed by a team with far less vision and talent. Materials and general design overall just look ugly, no consideration for the vernacular or for the importance of the site. Yuk.


Not sure Id want to be co-living in a 388unit 36 storey scheme with a couple of lifts and staircases and little or no outdoor space in Covid scenario. It’ll be interesting to see what changes in workplace,home working will do to the City centre regeneration and desire to be located there.

By justsayin

Honesty, that’s all clients/architects/planning need. Look at this with honesty and ask if they’re contributing anything to the community with this, over there own financial gains. If not, then why bother. This is tragically bad, such a prominent position with the developments around and they churn out such an poor attempt at design. It’s desperate trying to get good high-rise designs in this city and it’s disrespectful those who have to endure this.

By Joining in

Nickel and dime were miles better.
Really don’t like this.

By Anonymous

absolute disgrace

By livid