Plans in for House of Fraser conversion  

Investec, owner of Manchester’s grade two-listed Kendal Milne building, has lodged an application to redevelop the Deansgate site into 564,000 sq ft of offices. 

The property, which currently houses department store House of Fraser, would be converted and extended to provide 250,000 sq ft of offices, while 100,000 sq ft on the ground floor and basement levels would be retained for retail. 

In addition, the adjoining Fraser Building, which includes the King Street West NCP multistorey car park, would be demolished and replaced with a 14-storey block comprising 310,000 sq ft of offices and 54,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space. 

Johnannesburg-listed asset manager Investec also proposes the creation of a public space at Southgate, between King Street West and Parsonage Gardens. 

The scheme, revealed in October, is designed by architect Sheppard Robson. 

Kendal Milne Revamp 2021 NEW 3

The scheme comprises a total of 564,000 sq ft of office space

The Art Deco Kendal Milne was purpose built in 1939 as a department store. But with large-scale retail facing an uncertain future due to the rise of e-commerce and the ongoing pandemic, its owner views the office proposal as a more sustainable use, and one that would safeguard the building for the long term. 

Subject to planning approval, construction work is expected to start at the beginning of 2022 and complete by early 2025, according to a planning statement by Investec’s consultant Deloitte Real Estate. 

The project team also includes Stephen Levrant Heritage Architecture as heritage advisor; Cundall providing multidisciplinary engineering services; Layer as landscape architect; MHBC Cumming as development and project manager, and Fairhurst as structural engineer. 

Last month, plans for another major department store conversion in Manchester city centre were approved. AM Alpha, owner of the Rylands Building on Market Street, home to Debenhams, intends to redevelop the 457,000 sq ft building into a mixed-use scheme featuring 300,000 sq ft of offices and 70,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space.

Kendal MIlne Revamp 2021 NEW 2

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Fabulous use of a great building. More offices as well as residential and Retail. I’m guessing they know a lot more than some of the keyboard warriors !

By RichT

Looks fantastic, and more public space too. Great job.

By Christine

Excellent plans. We most certainly need for flexible office space, and Manchester is leading the way in the statistics.

By Mike

Great building but a bad time to be bringing forward office proposals with WFH being the future and people preferring to drive over public transport

By Dan

@Dan This won’t be ready until 2025 by which point wfh will seen as a fad and most people will be bored of it. I’m already bored of it (only been 4months) and can’t wait to be in the office again.

By Andrew

Why is it so difficult to create something complementary with the additional floors, I don’t mind the extension for the box on the roof looks naff.

By Cliff

it looks fantastic which means MCC will reject it

By Michael

Superb development, who’d want to work from home all the time…how dull that would be.

By Marg

Yeah build more offices when most people will now be working at home!

By Joey

Another ringing endorsement for the continued development of offices in city centre’s . Build quality and they will come, you don’t have to be a visionary to see that.

By Simon

It will take years to complete when most are back in the office! Looks great

By Tomo

Why build more offices when officer workers are working at home more. They are plenty of empty offices in manchester use them.
This building has been around more many years and it continues to bring joy to customers that shop there.
Retail has changed for every business due to covid-19 although building more offices is not the answer . Customers still want to experience a good shopping experience and they most definitely get that in Kendal’s.

By Georgina

Be great to see this fantastic building repurposed. So much development in Manchester, can’t wait to get back! As to working from home, nice to have the flexibility but people will be so done with that.

By Simon

I prefer the Deansgate scheme opposite no 1 Deansgate, that is the best proposal I’ve seen for Manchester.

By York Street

The rooftop extension looks absolutely hideous and ruins a great piece of architecture. Can they not design something a bit more subtle?

Also, as an aside, it’s a terrible shame to see the demise of such a longstanding institution. Deansgate will be become a much less interesting place without this important and historic retail anchor.

By Disappointed

Kendals was a cracking shop!

By Bob Dawson

Does anyone realise if this project goes ahead that could mean the jobs lost of hundreds of people that work in this building? This pandemic has already smashed the retail sector, never mind now they want to replace the use of the building with more offices! Specially now when more people than ever before works from home…I hope the council will reject it and support our sector that so greatly needs help…

By Alicia

I hope the room extension doesn’t stick out too much, there seems to be a trend of slapping goofy looking roof extensions to historic buildings. Any extension should fit in with the original style of the building. The carpark at the side will certainly not be missed. I wonder if House of Fraser will still take up the ground floor and basement areas.

By Jon P

So sad, would be better to have two floors for Shopping,
We’ve been going there for fifty plus years , weekly

By Pauline

Deansgate is going to look superb in a few years. I can’t wat.

By Anonymous

looks great. Maybe the WFH argument is both right and wrong, maybe it is going to be big thing (some of the employee surveys on the future of work I’ve seen would make you reluctant to deny that), but maybe Manchester is the right side of critical mass to absorb it, other place not so much…

By Rich X

We are looking to relocate our office from a desperately dreary business park near Altrincham into the City centre in the next year or so. I’d be in here tomorrow if only it was ready.

By Paul Price

Where is the choice for people who don’t want to shop online? Kendals/House of Fraser is the only decent shopping store in Manchester and now it’s being demolished so that the developers can make even more money. What happened to people’s choice?

By Teresa

Looks brilliant, just the kind of quality we need in the city centre. I can’t wait to be back in the office and those goes for 99% of people I speak to. Working from home will never stick, humans are a societal species and we need the interaction.

By New Wave

I assume a new developments will be a highly unappealing glass and steel monstrosity.
Can we get Prince Charles’ view on this?

By John Klejna

Will there be any jobs for offices.

By Hazel

Will be interesting to see what the new Retail will be with so much going on line. But much like people returning to offices I’ve no doubt there will always be a desire for actual stores. With so much recent investment in jobs and infrastructure in Manchester as per the recent reports, the city will bounce back probably better than anywhere else, and this , fantastic though it is, is just a tiny fraction of it.

By Man cunium

Unfortunately for many people traditional retail shopping is dead so this is a great way to reuse the building which otherwise could sit empty.

By Monty

Not impressed ! another beautiful building being ruined.There’s enough empty office space already available. I certainly wont be shopping in Manchester again.

By Claire

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