Great Northern Square CGI

IMAGES | Great Northern Square to become ‘urban oasis’

Jessica Middleton-Pugh

Trilogy Real Estate and Peterson Group have revealed their plans for the first phase of development at the Great Northern site in Manchester, centring around redesigned public realm, the residential conversion of the warehouse, and a new street.

Artist’s impressions of how work to the Northern part of the site will look when complete have been released ahead of a consultation event taking place tomorrow, Thursday 10 August, and Thursday 24 August.

Since acquiring the Great Northern in 2013, Trilogy Real Estate and Hong Kong-based Peterson Group have been developing proposals for the redevelopment. There have been two iterations of a strategic regeneration framework, the latest of which was approved in February this year. In March, a design team was appointed, made up of SimpsonHaugh, Planit-IE, masterplanner Will Alsop, and Johnson Naylor.

Great Northern Deansgate Terrace Rear

The first phase of the scheme focuses on Great Northern Square, creating a “new urban oasis”. The existing amphitheatre will be covered over, with a lawn placed on top and broad-leaved trees planted to make the square more attractive and easier to navigate for those passing through. A café and co-working space will be built, with a curved roof forming part of the lawn above.

The pavilion building on Peter Street is due to remain.

Across the site, Trilogy said that public space will be increased by 27%, from 62,000 sq ft to 80,000 sq ft.

The former Dwell unit will be demolished, to create Dean Street, a new pedestrian street running parallel to Deansgate, providing units aimed at independent retailers, cafés, restaurants and bars.

Speaking to Place North West, Trilogy chief executive Robert Wolstenholme said the ethos for the redevelopment was “for Great Northern to focus on the best of the Northern”, bringing high-quality, local brands onto the site.

More public realm is planned on top of the former railway lines at the rear of the warehouse, created by relocating the entrance to the cinema which occupies a large part of the site. The AMC Cinema takes up the southern part of the site, with a lease until 2022, so will form a later part of the development.

Great Northern Deansgate Terrace

Built by Great Northern Railway between 1896 and 1899, the grade two-listed Great Northern Warehouse is a dominant, industrial building, but currently used as a multi-storey car park. Under the plans, the warehouse will be converted into around 100 apartments.

A planning submission for this first phase of the redevelopment of Great Northern is expected to be submitted in September. Further phases of the £300m transformation are currently in the early stages of consultation, with plans to deliver the project over the next ten years.

The public exhibitions will be held from 3pm – 8pm on Thursday 10 August and Thursday 24 August.

Great Northern February 2017

Great Northern stretches along Deansgate until it meets Beetham Tower

Your Comments

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What is an urban oasis exactly? Do we not have any already in Manchester?

By Noel G

Yes, that’s more like it. Loving that it brings Dean Street back to life too.

By .

Good proposal. The public space is preserved. and the striking view of the warehouse frontage will remain. The amphitheatre was totally useless, and this will create a park that is a much better location for meeting and sitting around. The new street will improve access to the side of the warehouse and new developments to the south. What those are remain to be seen, but if they choose to demolish the southern building with the AMC in I don’t think many tears will be shed. Another high rise next to the Beetham, along with more public space would probably work very well.

By Lin

This is brilliant, so much better thought out than the previous scheme

By Bradford

Public realm looks a lot better, and much more likely to get used. Whats’ gonna happen to the casino? Quite like it in there.

By Anonymous

Great looking proposal.

By coolmanc

Looks great…love the creation of the new street

By David

A very well thought out scheme and a massive improvement.

By Tom

If this ends up looking like the proposals, which I hope it does, let’s hope the planting and inevitable litter situation is maintained properly. Looks like a well considered scheme, especially the removal of several existing barriers to pedestrian movement, and replacement of lost trees. I also hope the materials and finishes will be as good and well-installed as those in Greengate Square and St Peter’s Square.

By Local resident

Excellent design and excellent place making! I imagine the extension will be torn down eventually, it is too much of a juxtaposition with this current proposal, it would have zero street interaction compared to this. The AMC would be missed though.

By Soya

The AMC is being re-branded to Odeon next month, Soya and I’d expect that to include a change to Odeon ticket prices. So start your goodbyes now.

By Raj

Grim up North .

By Don

Should stay neat & tidy, as the inept Manchester CC will have nothing to maintain..If as tidy & clean as Spinningfields is,it will be great…

By Schwyz

Looks great. Far better than that strange alien fart that Alsop dished up

By Gisajob

What fantastic plans for this neglected and underused site. It will be great to see the Warehouse transformed.

By ACynical

Simply superb!

By Ian Christie

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