SONA, Cert, Manchester, P.Kevin Feddy
The scheme stalled in 2018. Credit: via Kevin Feddy Media

CERT moves to kickstart stalled Manchester BtR 

Dan Whelan

The developer has appointed contractor RECOM Solutions to restart work on the 45-home SONA development opposite the Manchester Apollo, more than three years after the project ran into difficulties. 

Trafford-based RECOM is the third contractor to work on the development. Both Cheshire Acres and Kettle & Talbot have had stints on site but the former is in the process of being liquidated, while the latter appointed administrators in March.  

CERT Property bought the site last year from a private consortium of investors for an undisclosed sum. 

Designed by architect Ollier Smurthwaite and known as Polygon Street, the original developer won planning permission for the project in February 2014 and construction started in 2016. 

However, work stalled in 2018 when the scheme was partially completed. When CERT bought the site inn 2020, it reworked the plans to comprise a mix of 45 one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments for rent. 

The original plans were for 39 flats. 

RECOM has experience of taking over distressed building projects and successfully completing them on time and within budget, according to CERT. 

Stephen Oster, head of acquisitions and development at CERT, said: “With our previous contractor entering administration earlier this year, we took the opportunity to review and enhance the design of the project while working to appoint a first class contractor in RECOM. 

“The entire project team is working tirelessly to ensure SONA is delivered to its full potential, and we’re delighted to see this development firmly back on track.” 

RECOM is currently undertaking external structural works and enabling works at the site, and is procuring works packages for other aspects of the development. 

The project is due for completion by the end of 2022. 

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I think the residents will have to put up with noise and pollution. I wouldn’t be opening my windows as the building is in an island of at least 2 busy roads.

By Paul Mason