Peel L&P with Urban Splash, and Bruntwood SciTech with London-based investor and developer Stanhope are vying for selection by the University of Manchester for the 4m sq ft mixed-use scheme.
The university is considering bids for the £1.5bn ID Manchester project after the four-party long-list was reduced to two parties. HBD and Singapore-based investor Mapletree Investments made the final four but have since dropped out of the running, Place North West understands.
The successful party is expected to be announced in the coming weeks after the university restarted the procurement process having put it on hold due to the pandemic.
ID Manchester is intended to attract science, research, development, cultural and technology companies to the university’s property estate. The university is freeing up the site as it moves to new buildings south of the inner ring road in its southern campus, such as the £400m Manchester Engineering Campus Development, which is nearing completion after a funding freeze delayed university projects.
At ID Manchester, a total of 2.6m sq ft of offices and other workspace is proposed, along with some residential development and three acres of public realm.
The 26-acre city centre site is next to the 650,000 sq ft, grade two-listed Sackville Building, which also offers an opportunity for repurposing, according to the university. The site was formally home to the University of Manchester Institute of Science & Technology, or UMIST, which merged with the University of Manchester in 2004.
Sheppard Robson, Arup, and Faithful+Gould have so far supported the university to develop the vision for ID Manchester, based on the principles of the existing framework for the site, drawn up by Bennetts Associates. This will be refreshed once a JV partner is chosen.
CBRE is advising the university on the procurement process.
All parties declined to comment.