Developer English Cities Fund wants to transform the 250-acre site into a “globally recognised destination”, through a revised framework that could see a Metrolink extension connecting the area with Salford Quays.
After being appointed by Salford City Council and the University of Salford to deliver the £800m project earlier this year, ECF – made up of Muse Developments, Legal & General and Homes England – has drafted an updated masterplan to guide development in the area.
An indicative masterplan drawn up by 5plus Architects was endorsed by the council in 2018 but never formally adopted, creating the need for an updated document.
Under 5plus’ masterplan, the development site was split into five areas but this configuration has been tweaked under ECF’s revised plans, which outline six key zones.
The Adelphi, Peel Park, Crescent, and Innovation Zones remain from the earlier masterplan, but the Transport Hub and Parks & River zone have been introduced under the revised framework.
The Transport Hub section of the framework proposes the creation of an integrated transport interchange featuring a Metrolink station that would provide connectivity between the university and Salford Quays.
The A6 could potentially be closed to traffic with public transport and pedestrians prioritised.
In addition, the existing railway lines at Salford Crescent station will be built over to provide improved connectivity between the Innovation Zone and the Peel Park Campus as well as an area of public realm.
The Innovation Zone, the most northerly area stipulated in the framework, incorporates many of the University of Salford’s facilities and is divided by Frederick Road.
ECF is proposing the construction of a podium across Frederick Road, connecting the two halves of the site, as well as a new-build 40,000 sq ft Innovation Centre. The plans also propose an area of public realm in the heart of the zone.
Parks & River
This zone covers David Lewis Playing Fields, Peel Park and the Meadow, areas of green space bordered by the River Irwell.
Plans for this area include the creation of improved pedestrian and cycleways, removing invasive species of trees and creating a recreation space that will “enhance the experience of transient users”.
Peel Park Campus
The area between Peel Park itself and Frederick Road would see the retention of a number of assets including Maxwell Hall and Salford Business School, as well as the “de-engineering” of Frederick Road to create an enhanced sense of arrival for students.
The Crescent, the southern-most area in the development zone, will be the main focus for residential development and ECF plans to create a a mixed-use neighbourhood featuring a hotel within the former Police HQ building and the redevelopment of The Old Fire Station into a multi-use community space.
Situated to the east of the River Irwell, Adelphi Village would be used to bring forward further residential development.
The Farmer Norton Car Park, Centenary Building and Old Adelphi would all be repurposed under ECF’s proposals.
The project team for the updated framework includes consultancy CBRE, Make Architects, infrastructure firm Aecom, landscape architects Planit-IE, quantity surveyor and project manager Faithful + Gould, and consultancy Cundall.
Consultation on the framework starts on 20 October.