St Michael's, Relentless, P. Roland Dransfield
Laing O’Rourke is tipped to build the scheme. Credit: Revere 3D

KKR to back £200m St Michael’s 

Dan Whelan

The US Investor has formed a joint venture with Neville-owned company Relentless to deliver the much-anticipated Manchester city centre mixed-use scheme. 

The joint venture is KKR’s first real estate investment in Manchester. 

KKR’s investment was made through its $2.2bn second dedicated European real estate fund, KKR Real Estate Partners Europe II. 

Laing O’Rourke is tipped to build the £200m scheme and construction of the commercial element of St Michael’s is expected to start before the year is out now that funding is secured. 

The first phase of St Michael’s is expected to take around two years to build.

Later phases of the project, the hotel and residential elements, could begin on site in 2022. 

OBI represented Relentless on the deal.

The project 

St Michael’s features a 41-storey tower designed by Hodder + Partners, comprising 191 hotel rooms and 181 apartments.  

The scheme, located on Jackson’s Row off Deansgate, also features around 200,000 sq ft of offices, which is to be the first element to be developed. 

The first phase of development will also see the former Bootle Street City Police Headquarters and the refurbishment of the Sir Ralph Abercrombie pub. 

Substantial public space will also be created, in the development of Abercrombie Square and a 20,000 sq ft roof terrace in the heart of the city. 

The project was previously being brought forward by the St Michael’s Partnership, comprising Jackson’s Row Developments, Manchester City Council and Singaporean funder Rowsley. 

Jackson’s Row won approval for the project in March 2018 and activated the consent earlier this year. 

St Michaels

The first phase of St Michael’s is expected to have a build period of around two years. Credit: Revere 3D

The joint venture reaction 

“St Michael’s has been challenging but with the support of KKR we are looking forward to delivering this exciting project in Manchester,” said Gary Neville, director of Relentless.  

“The team has worked throughout lockdown to bring this project forward. The Relentless team welcomes KKR to Manchester and can’t wait to deliver what we know will be an exceptional space for our city.” 

Charles Tutt, Head of UK Real Estate at KKR, said: “This is a unique regeneration project in a vibrant city. We have worked very closely with Relentless and the project team to get to this point and we look forward to delivering this exceptional development for the benefit of Manchester as businesses seek high-quality office space to meet their ever-evolving needs.” 

Anthony Kilbride, chief executive of Relentless, said: “This moment is a catalyst to get the project on-site by the end of this year. The Relentless team and KKR have already done a lot of the groundwork needed to enable us to move the project forward quickly. Our teams are aligned on the vision to deliver a world-class sustainable commercial space and new public realm in the city and will be working on the final stages of design in the coming months.” 

What the council said 

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: “Navigating the complexities of this development within the constraints of the site has undoubtedly been challenging, but we know the outcome is going to be truly transformational for this part of the city centre.

“This type of investment is the precise antidote we need in the city to balance the economic impact of the last year.” 

Joanne Roney, chief executive of Manchester City Council, said: “Manchester is a city of ambition, and we expect that same energy from our developers. St Michael’s is oozing ambition and this is the sort of development that cities crave and the sort of investment that is vital to our swift economic recovery following the pandemic.” 

Your Comments

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Great development but in completely the wrong place. Breaks my heart knowing that it will overshadow the Town Hall and demolish a swathe of historical buildings (which currently make for a nice back-alley walk).

By Robert

It always feels like the momentum with this project has gone.

By Elephant

Great news …far from being a blight on the town hall, IMO the viewing area should actually provide an amazing place for the public to see it in all its glory.

By JP

Manchester has demolished a lot of its history anyway. It’s what it’s always been good at. What difference is this going to make? So get it built and stop living in the past.

By History is for dinosaurs

If it is done tastefully it will fit perfectly into place and people will grow to like it, I think.

By Liverpool Romance

I don’t have a problem with the development other than it’s boring, but why is the leader of the council and the chief executive commenting on this? They don’t generally comment on other developments or funding deals do they?

By Sarah

I just hope the Abercromby retains it’s character and doesn’t end up full of yuppies. One of the few ‘proper’ (albeit slightly scruffy) pubs in the city

By Regular

Would rather see this built in place of the Renaissance Hotel…

By MrP

Yeah. I’ll still believe it when I see it. GN is way out of his depth on this and the Yanks will know it. Don’t be surprised if a new ‘Development Management Team’ appear sometime soon.

By Howard B

Much prefer the original two tower design, it was much grander and would bring a considerable amount of interest to a dilapidated, run down area. We can’t keep getting attached to every old building in the town centre, as a city we need to move forward! Imagine if we protected every single building ever built because it was ‘historical’, there’d still be rows or terrace houses creating slums and no way to attract wealth generating companies too the city. We need to compete with London and I feel Manchester just isn’t ambitious enough with its projects…

By Matt

At last. Been wondering what was happening with this. Looks a fantastic and high quality development close to the civic quarter. When Albert square and the town hall are redeveloped over the next couple of years this area will at last realise it’s potential.

By Realist

Congrats to Anthony and his team at Relentless. well done!

By Andrew