Ralli Quays revamp and Little Hulton school green lit in Salford 

A 212,000 sq ft office and a 280-bedroom hotel opposite Spinningfields and a 62,000 sq ft Star Leadership Academy have been granted planning approval. 


Ralli Quays 

Ralli Quays

The plans will see the demolition of the existing buildings. Credit: via planning documents

Developer: Legal & General Investment Management  

Planner: DPP Planning Services 

Architect: EPR Architects 

The scheme will see the 80,000 sq ft Ralli Quays demolished and replaced with a 16-storey hotel and a 12-floor office. 

At Thursday’s planning meeting, Salford City Council voted to approve the development in line with officers’ recommendations despite objections against the stopping up of a riverside pathway. 

At present, a path along the River Irwell can be accessed from Stanley Street via steps but the path itself is narrow and in poor condition. 

LGIM’s proposed redevelopment of the site would result in the loss of the pathway, a point that has angered some individuals. 

Dr Morag Rose said closing the path to the public amounted to “gentrification and social cleansing” as the path is sometimes used by homeless people. 

“Enclosure is not a compassionate or appropriate response to homelessness,” she said. “Our Irwell should be for everyone. Please don’t allow it to be annexed.” 

Despite these concerns, the plans were passed.  

The project team for Ralli Quays includes Turner & Townsend as project manager, DPP Planning Services as planning consultant, Walker Sime as quantity surveyor and Hannan Associates is providing M&E Services, Sustainability & BREEAM Consultancy. 

Clancy Consulting is structural engineer, WSP is advising on transport and Hyland Edgar Driver is the landscape architect.    


Star Leadership Academy 

Star Academy Salford In Little Hulton 3, DfE, C Ares Landscape Architects

Around 100 staff would work at the Star Leadership Academy, Salford. Credit: Ares Landscape Architects

Developer: Wates Construction and Star Academies  

Planner: Avison Young 

Architect: Sheppard Robson 

Out of the city centre, Salford voted to approve plans for the 62,000 sq ft Star Leadership Academy in Little Hulton. 

Wates Construction will build the two-storey secondary school on six acres to the west of Longshaw Drive.  

The brownfield site was formerly the home of Hulton High, which was demolished in 2009. The site has been vacant since. 

Capable of teaching 750 students, the school is part of the government’s Free Schools Programme. 

Free schools are funded by the government but are not controlled by the local authority. Star Academies, which runs 19 secondary schools across the country, will operate the new building. 

As part of the plans, the school would have a hard-court multi-use games area, all-weather pitch, and sports facilities.  

Star Leadership Academy, Salford is one of six schools Wates has been contracted to build for the Department for Education.

Dave Saville, regional director for Wates Construction North West, said: “Education will always be an enormous part of our business, not just in terms of building new schools but also our commitment to inspire young people about careers in the built environment. We now look forward to getting on site and creating a lasting impact for the Little Hulton community.

“This approval rewards for the tireless efforts of everyone involved in getting the scheme to this point, including the DfE and Star Academies, the Wates team and our design and supply chain partners, as well as the Salford City Council and statutory bodies who engaged with us throughout.”

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I am deeply disappointed that the Ralli Quays replacement will not have any public realm on the riverside. This is breathtaking in a day and age where this is expected in any significant waterfrontage site. How on earth the council could let this pass is beyond me

By Jo

Salford City Council have made a really poor decision with regards to the Ralli Quas development. In 2008 they made a document called “Planning Guidance Irwell City Park” which specifically contains the words “This permeability should not becompromised by new developments”.

A sad day for the public.

By Rob

Interesting Rob. If the decision is contrary to SCC’s own planning guidance is there any recourse for a third party appeal?

By David

Ralli Quays – might look good but loss of the pathway is a disgrace. They are meant to be opening the river up, not closing it.

By Anonymous

Personally I think its a great looking scheme. It could have been way taller – we should be grateful they’ve kept it sensible given the other towers popping up in the area. The bit of land that seems to be the “controversy” is little more than wasteland that no-one would wish to go to after dark unless they were up to no good! Daylight access as offered is absolutely fine.

By Pete

I can only assume the Irwell River Park route, if still going ahead, would join onto and route along the lower towpath instead.

Not really ideal but I do like the design. It would be good to get an update on the Irwell River Park. There’s loads of development taking place along the Irwell lately yet barely any of it incorporates it or even refers to the river park.
Shame as it has massive potential. A traffic free route between Salford Quays and the city centre? Yes please.

By Anonymous

Gutted by this, too. I just returned to Manchester from months away and walked by Plot G in Castlefield today was shocked, properly shocked. So I’m not surprised Salford approved this: when it comes to development, I don’t see how the two councils differ, and it’s proper disgraceful the precedent this will set. I think the point is not entirely the height of the proposed building here, but the loss of waterfront access. Its been left to ruin, like much of the Irwell path in the city centre (going toward the Quay), or sold to developers with loss of public right access (by Lowry and new developments), and it’s such a loss for what could have been a flourishing and widely used riverfront walk if it could be maintained. We can’t say that because its terrifying at night that that is a reason to just get rid of it and be alright with this proposal.

I look forward to whether any third party who opposed the plan is powerful enough to fight it, but like the rest of Manchester and Salford going much the same way of developers’ money, it’s rage-inducing.

By Lauren

The Irwell and riverside? Canalside … now without a canalside walkway.

By James Hayes

It’s for safety, this is Salford after all

By Dan

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