4 Angel Square May 2019 1

GALLERY | Plans in for 4 Angel Square

Charlie Schouten

Work is set to start on the 200,000 sq ft office at NOMA in around 12 months, with plans moving forward at pace for the 11-storey building designed by architect SimpsonHaugh.

Site owner MEPC announced plans for the office in early March and has wasted no time in submitting a planning application, which covers a site on the corner of Corporation Street and Miller Street.

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Featuring around 200,000 sq ft of offices, the building is likely to be delivered speculatively with the project starting next May, subject to planning. The scheme is expected to go out to tender in the autumn, again subject to planning consent, with a contractor chosen in early 2020. Under the timescale set by MEPC, existing buildings on the site will begin to be cleared in March next year.

The floorplates will be just over 19,000 sq ft across nine floors, with the upper floor standing at 16,450 sq ft, along with a 3,000 sq ft roof terrace.

Around 7,300 sq ft on the ground floor is set aside for a food & beverage unit, while a 32,000 sq ft basement will include plant and 57 car parking spaces, along with 212 cycle spaces.

Buildings to be cleared to make way for the scheme include the Ducie Bridge pub, which closed in 2015 and was built in the late 1800s. The pub was found to be “highly unsafe” after surveys in 2017, and had previously been occupied by squatters. Two three-storey shops and a four-storey warehouse, all of which are vacant, will also be demolished to clear the site.

Under the timeline, the project is set to hand over in March 2021.

The professional team includes BuroHappold as structural & civil engineer; project manager Gardiner & Theobald; Deloitte as planner; Planit-IE as landscape architect; Curtins as transport consultant; CDM Services as principal designer; JGA as fire engineer; and Stephen Levrant Heritage Architecture as heritage consultant.

The plans for 4 Angel Square follow recent commitments to invest in the extensive refurbishment of Redfern, a grade two-listed former warehouse and office building, which is being redeveloped into contemporary work space.

Construction work at Dantzic, another listed building being transformed into modern offices, is due to complete this spring while the first apartments in Angel Gardens, a 35-storey tower by build-to-rent developer Moda Living, will be available for rent this summer.

Global tech giant Amazon announced last year it would be opening the company’s first UK headquarters outside of London at Hanover, another recently renovated listed building at NOMA.

When complete, NOMA is expected to provide 2.5m sq ft of both new-build and renovated office space alongside housing, public realm, retail and leisure.

Two further offices at 2 and 3 Angel Square have been proposed; together, these will offer 145,000 sq ft and 260,000 sq ft of offices. Planning permission was secured for both buildings in 2015 but to date they have not been progressed.

Paul Pavia, head of development at MEPC, said:“Major corporates from not just the UK but across the globe are looking to base some of their operations in Manchester, thanks to the city’s strong civic leadership, thriving culture and leisure scene and increasing transport and digital connectivity.

“4 Angel Square will bring some much needed supply to the Manchester office market, with demand for high quality workspace outstripping supply and we’re excited to be submitting our proposals to the city council.”

In total, NOMA will provide 2.5 million sq. ft. of both new-build and renovated office space situated alongside housing, public realm as well as retail and leisure opportunities.

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Your Comments

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Boring beyond belief…there could of been a real landmark building here to counteract the fact that it will be blocking out the Co-Op head office, which is in itself an iconic building…very disappointing.

By Steve

@Steve It won’t be blocking the view of 1 Angel Square. Theres a stonking big public square in front of that. This is a very iconic building itself. One of the best (new) commercial designs in the city.

By sherbert_lemon

Rubbish Sherbert!…so if you stand on the opposite side of the road from the Ducie Bridge (at the front of Victoria Station), are you seriously saying that the Co-Op building won’t be obstructed!….It’s another boring Simpson Haugh generic design and not the least bit iconic!

By Steve

I assume this building is in Manchester and not, say, Kendal.

By Hackette

Please enlighten us Steve. What would you like to see here? This will be very similar to 1 St. Peter’s Sq which is a fine modern building. Every other regional uk city would be delighted to get this quality’

By Redtastic

The more views of the co-op blocked out the better

By B.Simpson

Saw SimpsonHaugh and knew it would be boring, clicked the article and i was not disappointed… yawn. Is there no one better in this city?

By Anonymous

Sherbert – can you define the area of the public square which achieves the status of ‘stonking’ ? Hopefully larger than the edge of car ark stuff illustrated bottom left………

By Tom H

Redtastic, I would like to see something which is a vast improvement to what is proposed, which looks cheap, generic and utterly dull. If you really think 1 St Peters Square is a fine modern building then expectations in Manchester are obviously very low. I’m well aware that we will never get a Shard or Gherkin (well anytime soon) but we can seriously do better than this. It’s like someone has just order it out of the Simpson Haugh catalogue…

By Steve

Oh look, a box, with a slice cut out then stuck back on somewhere else.


By Anonymous

There’s literally this building up the road.

By Notthisagain

Ha ha! comments in here are hilarious, and as predictable as ever. It’s boring…. it’s terrible… it should be a new city park. There are obviously some very bitter architects in here who aren’t winning enough business.

What exactly do you expect for an office building? The Shard is not an office building, its mostly apartments and hotel, so the shape can be different. Most office buildings in the world are boxes because they are efficient, cost effective and meet user requirements.

Steve – you still haven’t said what you would put there.

Building looks great. The City is in desperate need of office space, and this area needs development. Get cracking I say.


Simpson clearly never finished the Rubik Cube puzzle if he left it so mal-aligned.

By chris

Usual keyboard warriors who don’t understand the industry moaning.

As if a Shard or Gherkin would be appropriate on this site in terms of style or scale; as if it would be financially viable. This building is handsome, solid and will stand the test of time. Some people appear to want whacky, gimmicky architecture which will look dated in no time and would likely not attract tenants due to the unnecessary additional cost.

By Yawn

We do need more creative iconic buildings in Manchester but not the likes of the Shard which is an embarrassing gimmick.

By Lenny1968

You need to channel your energy into something far more positive. The truth is that architecture in Manchester knocks spots off every other regional city. Have a look at the materials and the detailing of the scheme. It would not get built in Leeds Liverpool Birmingham etc as they wouldn’t be able to afford it. I suggest that you take a trip to those other cities and look at the quality of what gets built there.

By Redtastic

As someone who isn’t a bitter architect I can honestly say… this building looks good.

I prefer simple and classy. It might not be a gigantic piece of art that’s going to define a city but there are other more ambitious designs being proposed. Be grateful for what is being built rather than moaning about a Shard that isn’t being built. Get real.

By Pink Panther