Allied London has appointed Lendlease and McLaren to deliver parts of the St John’s development in Manchester, ahead of enabling works for the 52-storey St John’s Place starting on site within the next four weeks.
Lendlease will focus on the new-build element of the St John’s masterplan, while McLaren will act as refurbishment delivery partner.
New-build aspects to be delivered by Lendlease include the 52-storey tower St John’s Place and four surrounding buildings, ranging in height from 18 to four floors. This part of St John’s will feature 387 apartments, 313 hotel rooms, and 14 apartments.
Nadler Hotels has been lined up as operator for the hotel space, which will take up the first 18 floors of the Place tower.
Lendlease will also build two further towers, the 36-storey Nickel and Dime buildings. Designed by Denton Corker Marshall, these include 610 apartments.
It is understood that a wider finance package for the project is yet to be agreed, although Aviva Investors have been rumoured for a number of months to be in talks to back the scheme.
The enabling works at St John’s are to be financed by a £16.5m senior loan from the North West Evergreen Fund, secured last September. Part of this money has also gone towards the refurbishment of Allied London’s Bonded Warehouse.
St John’s managing director of development Grant Jarvie said the appointments of McLaren and Lendlease would supplement Allied London’s existing in-house construction team.
“Over the past 12 months we have assembled a fully integrated and committed St Johns construction delivery team to work together collaboratively to deliver the brand and the vision for St Johns,” he said.
Other nearby projects, including the redevelopment of Old Granada Studios, do not fall under Lendlease’s remit. A shortlist of five contractors for the scheme – Bam, Kier, McLaren, Vinci, and Wates – was revealed by Place North West earlier this year.
SimpsonHaugh is the masterplanner on St John’s, as well as the architect for St John’s Place. Deloitte advised on planning.
Once completed, the St John’s neighbourhood will total 3,000 homes, 600,000 sq ft of commercial space and a mix of cultural venues including the £110m Factory arts centre.
Meanwhile, at a stand event at MIPIM, Allied London’s chief executive Michael Ingall revealed designs by Child Graddon Lewis for a new building which would form part of Allied’s media and tech brand Enterprise City, and could sit next to The Factory arts centre on part of the Trinity Islands site.
The project, dubbed Enterprise City Campus, is reminiscent of a proposal Allied commissioned from SimpsonHaugh for MIPIM 2016, which proposed a 300,000 sq ft ‘enterprise cluster’ building within St John’s, known as Central Village.
This idea, designed as hybrid of various uses in layered, interconnected blocks to accommodate offices, studios, retail, leisure, and public realm, alongside 50 apartments, was never progressed.
Ingall said that while the latest Enterprise proposal was “only a concept”, the fresh designs could provide around 500,000 sq ft of commercial space targeted at technology businesses.
“The building if developed would be an extension of Enterprise city and be adjacent to the new Factory arts centre, and replace a part of the Trinity Islands development, deliberately designed for modern industry and have a real purpose focussed on inward investment for enterprising businesses.” Allied London was granted planning consent last July for a five tower cluster at Trinity Islands, and is in the market for a funder.
Ingall also confirmed Astley & Byrom House would be rebranded to ABC, and revealed new images of the refurbished buildings. The two offices on Quay Street, purchased by Allied London last summer, are being revamped to house space aimed at digital, arts, and media organisations. Levitt Bernstein is the architect.
An option to fully redevelop the site would have taken “around five years,” Ingall said, and added the ABC hub would be act as “a centre for films, TV, and fashion”.
He confirmed that further residential buildings at St John’s were “due to start on site later this year”.
“I wouldn’t be standing here if our plans weren’t deliverable,” he said.