CEG’s £96m proposal opposite the Arndale Centre will return to Manchester’s planning committee next week, along with a hotel at Pearl Assurance House and Capital & Centric’s striking proposals at Adair Street.
The plans at 20-36 High Street were due to go before committee in July but CEG asked for a deferral to allow it to refine the proposals to deliver affordable housing. Similarly, Pearl Assurance House due at committee last month but a decision was delayed pending a site visit.
MINDED TO APPROVE
20-36 High Street
Number of apartments: 361
Number of storeys: 22
Retail and leisure space: 12,000 sq ft
Architect: Feilden Clegg Bradley
CEG’s plans are the committee’s agenda for the third time; after first being deferred pending a site visit in June, the developer asked for a further deferral last month.
The proposal will the demolition of a 1960’s block on High Street, and the construction of a 22-storey building with apartments on the upper floors, along with retail and leisure units at street level. There is also a proposed atrium and walkway running through the building.
The market street stalls at street level of the proposed site, including operators Northern Soul Grilled Cheese and Jerk Shack, are to be relocated closer to the NCP Car Park.
A number of councillors had voiced their displeasure at CEG’s designs, but planning officers said members should be minded to approve the scheme, arguing the project would “establish a sense of place, would be visually attractive, sympathetic to local character and would optimise the use of the site.”
Councillors had also criticised the scheme for its “lack of affordable housing”; objections put forward argued there was a “pressing need” for affordable home and that the planning committee “cannot keep allowing developers to profit without adequately addressing this”.
CEG has proposed a £1m contribution towards off-site affordable housing as part of the project but said the benchmark land value of £8.6m together with build costs of £78.4m meant that on-site affordable housing could not be supported.
This view has been supported by planning officers ahead of next week’s committee.
RECOMMENDED FOR APPROVAL
Developer: Capital & Centric
Operator: Leonardo Hotels
Architect: Stephenson Studio
Contractor: Bowmer + Kirkland
Planner: Avison Young
The 110,000 sq ft hotel is on the corner of Adair Street and Great Ancoats Street, near Capital & Centric’s Crusader Mill and within the Portugal Street East regeneration framework.
Place North West revealed in August Bowmer + Kirkland had been appointed to the scheme with demolition works already under way; a green light at next week’s planning committee will allow construction to begin in earnest.
Recommending approval, planning officers said: “The development would deliver a high-quality building and regenerate a site which is principally characterised by a poor-quality environment.
“The site is considered to be capable of accommodating a building of the scale and massing and has is a design quality appropriate to the sites gateway location.”
Pearl Assurance House
Number of rooms: 70
Number of storeys: 7
Agent and planning architect: Stephenson Studio
Architect: Leach Rhodes Walker
Developer: Greenlane Properties
The proposal for the conversion of the vacant office building Pearl Assurance House on Princess Street facing Manchester Town Hall was deferred for a site visit last month, despite a recommendation to approve from officers.
The 70-room hotel is to include a seven-storey extension to the rear of the site, and a two storey-extension replacing the existing sixth floor to create a rooftop bar.
Recommending planning approval, officers said: “The development would not have a significant detrimental impact on the settings of surrounding listed buildings, including the grade one-listed Town Hall and the grade two-star-listed Old Law Library.
“The impact on residential amenity would not be unusual in this context. It would enhance a non-designed heritage asset within a conservation area.”