Capital & Centric is preparing to submit a planning application next month for the conversion of the grade two-listed Crusader Works mill complex near Piccadilly Station into 200 flats.
The developer bought the 200,000 sq ft mills in an off-market deal with private landowner Shafiq Tufail at the end of last year.
Designed by Shedkm, the refurbished mills would include 200 apartments, made up of 75 with one bedroom, 124 two bedrooms and one with three-bedrooms.
There would be no parking spaces within the scheme, but every flat would have cycle storage.
The cluster of buildings is on Fair Street, Chapeltown Street, Congou Street and Baird Street in Manchester city centre. Some of the mills are linked, forming a central courtyard, which would be landscaped as part of the redevelopment.
One block of the complex, which isn’t listed, would be demolished within Capital & Centric’s plans, replaced by a 10-storey building.
The developer is currently conducting a public consultation on its plans, which is running until 16 May. A planning application is due to be submitted by the beginning of June, and subject to planning approval a start on site is expected in May 2017. The flats are due to go up for sale, at a starting price of around £150,000.
The mills are partially occupied by a variety of businesses, including Rogue Studios which provides space for around 100 artists, alongside clothing manufacturers. However, large sections of the mills are vacant and falling into disrepair. An initial £4m would need to be spent in order to make the buildings safe.
Capital & Centric is in talks with the occupiers in regard to exiting the warehouses.
Adam Higgins, co-founder of Capital & Centric, said: “There are very few of these big listed mills left undeveloped in Manchester, and to have the opportunity to save it and open it up again makes us feel very privileged. All the ingredients are there, oak ceilings, oak floors and iron columns. It’ll make some incredible loft apartments.”
The biggest mill is Crusader Works, built in around 1830 by Joseph Chessborough Dyer, co-founder of the Manchester Guardian Newspaper and the Bank of Manchester. The mills were initially used to produce machinery for the textile industry.
The area around the mills has been earmarked for the proposed high-speed rail terminal, which would extend the existing Piccadilly Station buildings and act as an anchor for the wider regeneration of the area. Manchester City Council’s masterplan prepared by Bennett Associates shows offices, apartments, hotels and retail surrounding the mills.
The mills are the only listed buildings in the area surrounding the HS2 expansion zone.
Deloitte is advising Capital & Centric on the planning application.