High Street Manchester

PLANNING | Developer defers High Street application

CEG’s proposal facing Manchester’s Arndale Centre has been deferred once again, but on this occasion, by the developer itself. MEPC’s 240,000 sq ft office at 4 Angel Square and Agecroft Investment Company’s Northern Quarter development at 52-58 Thomas street both won approval.

Ahead of committee, all three developments were recommended for approval.


20-36 High Street

High Street Manchester 2

Number of apartments: 361

Number of storeys: 22

Retail and leisure space: 12,000 sq ft

Architect: Feilden Clegg Bradley

Planner: Deloitte

Developer: CEG

The £79m CEG development was deferred by the developer in order to refine further proposals to deliver affordable housing. This comes after last month’s planning committee where the plans were deferred based on a motion from Cllr Lyons that requested a site visit before plans went any further.

David Hodgson, head of strategic development north at CEG said: “As is widely accepted, the regeneration of this constrained brownfield site is very challenging due to significant abnormal costs- it is adjacent to the tram line and extensive costs are demanded to protect the Manchester trams switch gear in the basement, despite it nearing the end of its lifespan and requiring imminent replacement.”

Hodgson went on to say that CEG has listened to the council’s concerns regarding affordable housing but that it needed to re-evaluate how to execute it: “We had hoped to agree the mechanism with the Council’s legal team by the July committee, but we need further time to finalise this and will therefore defer the decision as we feel it is such an important solution.”

The proposal sees the demolition of a 1960’s block currently on Manchester’s High Street, and its replacement with a 22-storey building with apartments on the upper floors, and retail and leisure units at street level.  There is also a proposed atrium and walkway running through the building.

The market street stalls which are currently located at street level of the proposed site, including operators Northern Soul Grilled Cheese and Jerk Shack, would be relocated closer to the NCP Car Park.


4 Angel Square

4 Angel Square May 2019 2

Number of storeys: 11

Office space: 240,000 sq ft

Architect: SimpsonHaugh

Planner: Deloitte

Developer: MEPC

MEPC’s proposal for office space at Noma was approved at committee, and is set to start construction May 2020.

Councillors Lyons, Clay, and Davies all vocalised their displeasure at the proposal to demolish the Ducie Bridge Pub, which stands on the edge of the development site. Cllr Lyons said that while the pub didn’t have listed status, which it tried but failed to attain in 2017, it  was still very much “part of the heritage of the area.” This was seconded by Cllrs Clay and Lyons.

The scheme is set to see the creation of a green space in the centre which will be available for use by the public. According to a representative from MEPC, the development is set to bring 2,000 new jobs to the area, not including the additional temporary jobs created during construction.

The scheme also include the further demolition of two three-story shops and a four-storey warehouse, all of which are vacant.

The professional team includes BuroHappold as structural & civil engineer; project manager Gardiner & Theobald; Deloitte as planner; Planit-IE as landscape architect; Curtins as transport consultant; CDM Services as principal designer; JGA as fire engineer; and Stephen Levrant Heritage Architecture as heritage consultant.

52-58 Thomas Street

Thomas Street 2

Number of hotel/aparthotel rooms: 26

Number of storeys: range of 3,4,5 storey buildings

Architect: GA Studio

Planner: Ruth Jackson Planning

Developer: Agecroft Investment Company

The newest Northern Quarter scheme, put forward by developer Agecroft Investment Company, was unanimously approved at committee.The development was tweaked after a public consultation in February, where afterwards, they decided to lighten up the brickwork to stone cladding.

A representative of AIC said that “Agecroft have been attentive in the Northern Quarter prior to its mass redevelopment. The development at Thomas Street is likely to be the final piece of the puzzle.”

Councillor Lyons and Clay commended the scheme and its ability in keeping to the heritage of the area. Cllr Lyons also requested that while trees were unlikely to be added to the area because of the narrowness of the walkways, “some foliage in the form of hanging baskets would be appreciated.”

The site retains 52-58 Thomas Street, a unit previously occupied by curry café Al Faisal, which moved across the road last year. The interlinked buildings will be between four and five storeys and are bounded by Thomas Street, Kelvin Street, John Street, and Back Turner Street.

Your Comments

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I’m really worried about where William Hill will go after the development, the current building is one of the few open urinals real mancunians use every day.

By Labour councillor

Shame on Manchester councillors if 20-36 High Street doesn’t end up getting built. Best proposal for the Northern Quarter ever

By Anonymous

The northern quarter is a dump, we want to keep it that way, all about the heritage, we don’t want this to destract from the Arndale Tower with anything of a higher standard

By Labour councillors

So let me get this right, buildings which replaced weavers cottages of character and a wonderful looking old pub to be replaced by bland nothing blocks get approved, whilst one of the best schemes to come before planning in about a decade to replace a run down 1960’s eyesore will probably now not get built. I’m not saying that MCC planners are incompetent or anything, but…

By Logenberry

The current councillors are communists, they have no time for the successful working people of Manchester and think we should all sign on

By Manchester is dead

Manchester gets a quality scheme which replaces a brutalist block and faces the urinal tiles of the Arndale and Manchester’s new Labour councillors block it. Get a grip.

By Councillor Confusion

@ Manchester is dead – your ridiculous hyberbole belongs in the MEN comment section. Keep it there please.

By Anonymous

Anonymous, you clearly don’t know Manchester’s councillors, blocking home building for being too luxury is communism

By Manchester is dead

4 Angel Square is an absolute disgrace. Awful design with a terrible loss of heritage.
20-36 High Street is great but it must incorporate the end Art Nouveau building – it is not just the lost of a brutalist block! It is also adjacent to GII Buildings so deferring this is the right option until a revised scheme is tabled.

By Acelius

This obsession with social housing in Central Manchester is becoming wearing. Keyworker homes I agree to but Social housing in a city centre which has more cranes than anywhere else in Britain is rehashing the old mistakes of the past. I remember when the housing stock in the centre of Manchester was described as the worst slum in Europe.

By Elephant

The High Street proposal looks great hopefully the addition of a few shared ownership units will placate the planners.

By Lenny1968

The High Street development proposal looks stunning it must go ahead to enhance the look and feel of the area. The ugly Arndale centre carpark should be next for clearance and redevelopment to complement this excellent development proposal.

By Anonymous

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