Octopus Finance and Wildhorn Properties have agreed a £9m bridging loan to a joint venture between Featherfoot Whitworth Street and Altrincham-based EGCC Group to complete the purchase of a site on Whitworth Street West with planning for a £117m residential scheme.
Development finance of £78m has also been agreed in principle and will be triggered once 30% of the 327 apartments within the tower have sold, according to broker Adapt Finance.
Russell WBHO is lined up to start work on the 327-apartment development, branded as Manchester Tower, in Q2 next year.
The site, next to the City Road Inn pub and opposite to Axis Tower, was acquired in an £8.75m deal on Wednesday 6 October from Guernsey-based Brigantes, according to the joint venture.
Brigantes won planning consent for the scheme in 2015. Inhabit Residential was then reported to be bringing the project forward but work never started. Inhabit, run by directors of Mercer Real Estate, was dissolved in March, according to companies house.
As well as Russell WBHO as the main contractor, the Featherfoot/EGCC joint venture is working with Jon Matthews Architects, project manager Ikon, Lambert Smith Hampton, and planning consultant Deloitte to bring the project forward.
Completion is scheduled for Q2 2025.
Dean Hewart, director of Altrincham-based EGCC Group, said: “Plans are well progressed for the development of Manchester Tower on Whitworth Street West.
“We have development funding in place and securing ownership of the site this week was a key milestone for the joint venture partnership. This is a central prime location site ideal for residential development, providing new homes for the city and an exciting investment opportunity for purchasers.”
The development is to feature a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments for sale.
Other elements of the scheme include and a rooftop restaurant, bar, gym, private lounge and meeting rooms.
As the site is constrained and close to the junction of two major roads, the construction team will have to contend with limited storage and access, along with the proximity of the train line into Deansgate Station, presenting similar challenges to those at Axis Tower, which Russell WBHO completed in 2020.
Gareth Russell, joint managing director of Russell WBHO, added: “We’re pleased to be working closely with the client and the development team on bringing forward Manchester Tower.
“It’s a site we know very well, having spent three years on the opposite side of the road building Axis, and our team is looking forward to starting work on this fantastic project.”