Brunswick Mill
Hodder + Partners is the scheme's architect. Credit: via planning documents

Maryland’s Brunswick Place tipped for sign off 

Dan Whelan

The developer wants to convert the East Manchester mill into 277 homes in a £58m project that has been in the pipeline for more than a decade. 

Maryland Securities’ two-acre Bradford Road scheme is tipped for approval when Manchester City Council’s planning committee meets next week. 

A planning application for the residential conversion was lodged in May. The scheme aims to “safeguard and breathe new life” into the former mill, Maryland said at the time.  

Designed by Hodder + Partners, Brunswick Place is to feature 20,000 sq ft of commercial space on the ground floor of the refurbished mill, which will house 150 apartments.  

Four and seven-storey new-build elements will comprise the remaining homes, including townhouses and a small amount of commercial space to animate the corner of Beswick Street. 

Additionally, Maryland proposes the creation of a public path through the site connecting Bradford Road with the Ashton Canal towpath.   

The site provides an opportunity to link together New Islington and the Etihad Campus, continuing the regeneration of the Eastlands district, the developer said. 

Brunswick Mill 2

The project features two new-build elements fronting Bradford Road. Credit: via planning documents

Part of the mill is occupied by a number of companies on short term tenancies, including Brunswick Mill Rehearsal Studios. However, income generated is “not sufficient to secure the long-term, sustainable future for the entire site”, according to the developer.  

Maryland is in talks with occupiers about the future of the building and relocation possibilities.  

The project does not currently comprise any affordable housing provision but the viability of the scheme is to be retested to determine if a contribution towards affordable housing could be made. 

As it stands, the gross development value of the project would be just shy of £58m against a build cost of £46.5m, which would give Maryland a profit of £10.5m.  

On this basis, the scheme could not support an affordable housing contribution, according to a viability report by Cushman & Wakefield. 

Deloitte Real Estate is the planning consultant for the scheme. 

Whether Maryland will bring the scheme forward post planning remains to be seen. At Weir Mill, a similar site in Stockport, Maryland won planning consent for the redevelopment of the site but ultimately sold it to Capital & Centric. 

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Who would want to pay such an unaffordable rent to live in an apartment facing a high crime area? This is not gentrified Ancoats, it’s Miles Platting.

By Nimble nimbly

@Nimble nimbly, I’m sure people said the same about Ancoats and New Islington when they first started developing there. Will be great to see this redeveloped. Lovely building in need of some TLC. Hopefully they don’t wait another 10 years to actually begin. Get it done.

By Mystery

The conversion element looks great but, as usual, the new build element is rubbish.

By Observer

The manner in which PNW are currently writing about viability appraisals and development margins is unfair. Maybe you should look at an article which analysis rapidly rising delivery costs and increasing exit risks for developers. You should also consider that a build cost of £46.5m is a base, subject to all other additional development costs such as professional fees, marketing costs, sales fees, legal costs, site assembly, prelims, abnormals etc etc.

By The Old Faithful

Great looking conversion, will add immensely to the area.

By NoNimbys

@The Old Faithful – I’m not sure what you mean when you say the reporting is unfair. Our reporter stated the facts as they are and I stand by what he wrote. An article on increasing exit risks is a good idea, however, and I appreciate the suggestion. If you’d like to discuss our coverage further, you can reach me at julia@placenorthwest.co.uk.

By Julia Hatmaker

Presumably the quoted build costs contains a healthy contingency against the usual development risks for a project of this type including material and labour cost uncertainty. I do have some sympathy though because the double whammy of covid and brexit continues to have a significant impact on costs.

But Place is absolutely justified in reporting details of the viability appraisal as they’re of legitimate interest to the development community and public alike. I get the impression that developers do not like the increased awareness and scrutiny of these viability appraisals one little bit. If they’re complaining about it, it has to be a good thing from the public’s point of view!

By Cost Co

Why on earth are the council so obsessed with keeping thesw awful old buildings? Knock it down and build a purpose built apartment block with basement parking, balconies, decent sized rooms, amenities and energy efficient credentials! That way young professional who wil contribute too the economy will actually want to live here.

By Matt