The development of 142 affordable micro-apartments in Cardinal Street has been approved by Oldham Council.
The proposals for the 68,674 sq ft scheme were designed by Liverpool architect Falconer Chester Hall for Hong Kong-based client G-Suite Holdings who is the landowner.
Each self-contained micro-apartment in the development, to be known as G-Suite Cardinal Court, will be between 215 sq ft and 375 sq ft and will include smart design features to maximize space such as beds and tables which fold away.
A council report called the development "a highly sustainable scheme which will bring into use an unfinished and derelict building thereby making a positive contribution to visual amenity, benefit the local economy, and assist in regenerating the area".
Adam Hall, managing director of Falconer Chester Hall, said: "This type of accommodation has already proved popular elsewhere in the UK for those looking to take their first step on the housing ladder such as key workers and post-graduate students, and will help open up the residential market to a wider spectrum of society."
Bolton-based Artez is currently on site with enabling works. The project is due for completion in spring 2015.
There is currently a structural frame on site from a previous residential scheme which will be re-used and modified to suit the new building.