Circle Square Vita 5plus
The two Vita towers at Circle Square were designed by 5plus

Manchester approves 950 city centre flats

Jessica Middleton-Pugh

Two residential towers at Bruntwood and Select Property Group’s Circle Square on Oxford Road, and two blocks by Urban & Civic at Whitworth Street have been given the green light by Manchester City Council’s planning committee.

Representing the first phase of development at Circle Square, 716 serviced apartments will be built at the former BBC site, and will be managed under Select’s Vita Student brand. The buildings were designed by 5plus Architects and are 13-storeys and 17-storeys respectively.

The total development value for the two blocks is £55m, while the total expected to be invested across the whole site over the next decade is £750m. Planit-IE and Feilden Clegg Bradley are the masterplanners.

Rhys Westacott, associate director of 5plus, said: “These buildings will play a key role in the long term success of this area creating a place for bold and brilliant people to live and interact with each other and the city.

“We worked with Select designing the first new build Vita Student at First Street, Manchester, which has been a tremendous success and voted the UK’s most luxurious student accommodation. We are delighted that our buildings will be the first ones to be delivered here.”

Construction is due to start later this month.

At Whitworth Street and Princess Street, Urban & Civic will deliver 240 flats and a hotel. The two residential buildings will be 12-storeys and 15-storeys high. The hotel will include ground floor commercial uses, a restaurant and café, and public realm.

The proposals were brought forward following the sale of the one-acre former Origin site to Urban & Civic in 2014, part of a portfolio previously owned by developer Donal Mulryan’s company West Properties.

The site had planning permission for a scheme designed by Ian Simpson, now SimpsonHaugh & Partners. SimpsonHaugh then reworked the plans for Urban & Civic.

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