Place North West looks back at the stories most popular with readers this year. The news was dominated by tall buildings, controversial developments, big office requirements, and of course, Brexit.
See below for overall top stories of 2016
Best read stories by month
Prolific Manchester developer Renaker outlined its plans to build 1,500 flats across four high-rise towers at its Owen Street development site.
Student and property enthusiast Ed Howe launched an interactive online map, showing projects under construction or proposed across the city.
The competition for the long-awaited £550m regeneration of Manchester’s Mayfield narrowed to a list of six potential developers.
Michelle Rothwell, formerly of Capital & Centric and CBRE, started her own investment and development company, with a focus on “unloved buildings and sites” across the region.
Proposals for 210 homes in and around the distinctive Toast Rack building in Fallowfield, formerly a Manchester Metropolitan University campus, were put forward by new owner Generation.
Fiona Hobson and Chris Pratley, both based in Cushman & Wakefield’s Manchester office, sadly passed away in quick succession, leaving behind two teenage children.
Renaker lodged a planning application for its Owen Street flats, including its intention to build Manchester’s newest tallest building, at 64 storeys.
The final three potential developers were selected for the 24-acre Mayfield site, later to be rejigged as Argent dropped out of the race, to be replaced by U+I.
A 100-tonne section of vertical lifting bridge being built across the Manchester Ship Canal collapsed, after the cables supporting the structure snapped.
Liverpool FC released images showing the start of work inside Anfield stadium, to make the Main Stand one of the largest all-seater stands in Europe.
The planning application for Capital & Centric and Henry Boot Developments’ Kampus project on Aytoun Street was submitted, alongside a new artist’s impression revealing a central botanical garden.
As the news that the UK had voted to leave the European Union began to sink in, Place North West rang round a cross-section of property advisers for their reactions.
Days before a press conference where footballers-turned-developers Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs were set to reveal designs for their much-anticipated St Michael’s scheme in Manchester city centre, an early indicative image for the project by Make Architects emerged.
Later in the week at an event at Manchester Town Hall, Neville confirmed all buildings on the St Michael’s site would be demolished, to make way for two black-clad towers of 21 and 31 storeys.
Developer Neptune said it would be taking over the grade two-listed former ABC cinema in Liverpool, and would convert it into a multi-use music and entertainment venue.
Manchester City Council’s planning committee turned into a lively debate, with councillors criticising plans for 24 modular flats from the company behind Yo! Sushi, telling it to “yo yo back to London”. The project was approved later in the year after revisions.
A company backed by the brothers behind discount retailer B&M announced plans for 190 apartments in Manchester’s Green Quarter.
The Department for Work & Pensions’ long-running search for a 70,000 sq ft office drew to a close as it narrowed its choices to the new-build Two St Peter’s Square, or the refurbed Arkwright House.
Manchester City Council’s chief executive continued to back the proposed city centre scheme as “appropriate”, while city developers took to Twitter to call St Michael’s “horrible”.
An investigation by the Insolvency Service led to the entrepreneur behind Liverpool’s failed Project EV enterprise village receiving a lengthy disqualification from being a director.
The minister for transport confirmed the preferred route for the North West stretch of the high-speed rail network, with stops at Crewe, Manchester Airport and Manchester Piccadilly.
Another large Government requirement settled on a North West base, as HM Revenue & Customs selected the 350,000 sq ft India Buildings as its Liverpool HQ.
After the September news that Manchester City Council’s long-serving chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein would be stepping down, his replacement was revealed; Joanne Roney, chief executive of Wakefield Council, a little-known figure this side of the Pennines.
More than a dozen property business leaders wrote to Greater Manchester’s 10 local authorities and interim mayor to complain about the emerging Greater Manchester Spatial Framework’s “lack of ambition”.
Top 20 best read stories of 2016
- India Buildings heads list for Liverpool HMRC base
- Shazan Qureshi disqualified for 13 years
- Map shows Manchester property boom
- Renaker eyes 2020 completion for skyscraper cluster
- B&M bosses put in plans for Green Quarter flats
- Lime Street cinema to be reborn as gig venue
- First look at St Michael’s designs
- Married couple at Cushmans die within days of each other
- Shortlist announced for £550m Mayfield development
- Neville unveils St Michael’s towers
- Green belt release essential to hit GMSF growth targets
- How St Michael’s towers could look
- Renaker dusts off West plans for Owen Street
- Bericote plans 1.4m sq ft sheds scheme
- Ask, Argent and Muse make Mayfield long list
- Latest Renaker tower takes Greengate total to 2,100 homes
- Plans in for Renaker skyscraper cluster
- Seaforth towers set for demolition
- Experts assess Brexit impact on NW property
- DWP lines up Manchester office options