Renaker unveils second phase of Manchester’s Crown Street

Manchester-based developer Renaker Build has unveiled details of the second phase of its Crown Street project, including a distinctive circular tower alongside other elements, and expects to submit a planning application in January 2020.

The scheme comprises two 51-storey skyscrapers, designed by architect SimpsonHaugh and is set to house 865 apartments on the edge of Manchester city centre.

Described by Renaker as the ‘Blade’ and the ‘Circle’, one tower has been designed with cylindrical shape, an unusual proposition for a residential block in Manchester, while the other is a rectangle with curved sides.

Renaker’s Crown Street is also due to include a primary school, a public park and a multi-storey car park with around 380 spaces.

The school is planned to occupy a two-storey building to the north of the residential towers and accommodate around 210 pupils, according to the plans unveiled at a public consultation event on Wednesday. The school will be screened from view from the towers with a line of trees and other greenery.

On the lower floors of the apartment blocks, Renaker plans to build several commercial units, a reception area and a gym on the upper foyer, as well as a private garden.

While the towers occupy the same parcel of land, they will be kept as distinct buildings under the plans, each with separate gardens and access. Under the proposals, 33% of the apartments will be one-beds, 6% three-beds, and the rest will be two-bedroom apartments.

Renaker expects to submit a detailed planning application for the residential towers, together with outline plans for the school, which is still in the early design stages.

The circular tower is one of only a few proposals of its shape which have emerged in Manchester in recent years. There are several non-residential buildings with curved sides in the city, including the Co-operative Group’s headquarters One Angel Square and Hotel Indigo, both near Manchester Victoria railway station.

An historic proposal for a building at Piccadilly Village, known as Gravity Tower, was a similar circular residential tower but was never built.

Renaker is already on site with the first phase of Crown Street, which comprises two residential blocks totalling 664 apartments. The 21-storey Victoria Tower has topped out, according to Renaker, and the connected 52-storey Elizabeth Tower is set to be constructed within the next 12 months. Both are designed by SimpsonHaugh.

Last month, it was revealed that London-based Maslow Capital had backed Crown Street with a £123m development loan.

The scheme is part of Renaker’s wider redevelopment of the Great Jackson Street area on the edge of Manchester City Centre. That includes the four-tower cluster Deansgate Square, which is nearing completion, and sites owned by DeTrafford, which have planning consent for towers of 32, 26 and 18 storeys on Olympia Trading Estate, also designed by SimpsonHaugh.

Overall, Great Jackson Street is earmarked for more than 6,500 apartments across 23 towers, as well as lower-rise blocks and townhouses.

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Looks good. Great to see a tower that isn’t a tall box.


Interesting proposal. We need still need an additional doctor/dental surgery here.

By Steve

Great to see some new shapes, also being Renaker this will be start to finish in 2 years, exciting times in Manchester.

By Bob

Well I must hold my hands up. Have SimpsonHaugh been listening to us? Pleasantly surprised with these designs since they are not rectangular boxes! Are they feeling okay over at SimpsonHaugh HQ?

By New Wave

Nice to see a bit of public space too.

By L

Looks good. This area is really taking shape.


the circular tower will look great when it glows pink at night

By mk

Well what is there to say? Welcome to the big league Manchester.

By Elephant

I was promised tall glass rectangles. Very disappointing, true mancs won’t want this.

By daveboi

Another tall tower with a fantastic view of — another tall tower — only yards away. I’ll let you look into my flat, if I can look into yours.

By James Yates

A cylinder! To be honest you have to wonder how practical this is for a residential tower and if it will ever get built in this form. However, it’s great to see something different, get it built.

By Anonymous

I find there is so much negativity surrounding Manchester’s expansion, especially when it comes to tall buildings. The fact is, if the policy is to grow the population of the city centre then building high is the only option, how else are we going to accommodate that population growth. As for whose buying and renting these properties, there is of course the foreign investor but there is also a demand from local people.

Manchester is currently doing very well at retaining graduates, with many of them choosing to live in the city centre after graduating. As someone who has worked in the city centre for the past 15 years the transformation has been spectacular – everything from the increase in well paid high value jobs, the restaurant scene, and the general vibe of the place are great.

Are there still problems, absolutely, the homelessness, the general cleanliness of the city centre, the drug problem etc., etc. These things all need addressing along with affordable housing (which I don’t believe should necessarily be in the centre) there is still loads of work to do to make Manchester a truly great city, but people should embrace what is happening rather than constantly fighting against it.

By Manc Man

Just wondering if James Yates has ever been to a city before?

By Logic

Well said Manc Man.


UK resident and moving to Manchester to occupy a spot in this development. That’s one of the many impacts of ambitious and creative construction & much needed to take the City to the next level. Bravo SimpsonHaugh for the cylindrical design, I for one hope it gains approval. There is without doubt demand for luxury high-rises from both UK residents & foreign investors moving away from the increasingly smaller yields of London Investment – I’m ecstatic Manchester has been ‘chosen’ as next on said foreign investor’s agenda.

Hell, Manc & Brums are always competing for ‘UK’s 2nd City’ status, these high-end iconic developments (in both price & height) are synonymous with major cities so why the moaning now Manchester is underlining their gravitas? The City, the Council, are moving on from the Little-Englander mindset, many locals will be left behind and moaning but those who truly love the ambition & potential of this great city (and no doubt whom have the same positive outlook on life themselves) will welcome with open arms.

Homelessness, affordable housing & cleanliness issues agreed certainly need addressing but not at the detriment of schemes such as this! which help put Manchester on the map Internationally! The two are not mutually exclusive so I hope the Council’s strategy does indeed find the right balance for all to celebrate & enjoy the 2nd City in near future.


By Haich

Very well said manc man.

By phildered

It looks brilliant and Renaker are known for not dragging their feet or messing about.
I don`t understand why the first thing some people do is find fault.

By Chaddertonian

This is a bit blank at ground level, towers interfacing with the park with just one long featureless glass wall? They don’t really address the park like Renaker proposals at Greengate do… also I can’t help but think that this park is an exclusive enclave where the money might’ve been better spent improving links to Hulme Park across the Mancunian Way.

By Denizen

Excellent design in a perfect location for tall buildings, as a born and bred Mancunian I welcome this and other such developments.

By Lenny1968

This is all nice and cosy for the City-living-Middle Class and the well off but, the investment needs to be put into Social Housing. It seems to be that we, as fellow mancunians who are from real working class backgrounds, are being shuffled out of the central areas of the city, for example Hulme, Chorlton and Ancoats because the city is being over-run by corporate business interests who only focus on making money. Also, with the homeless situation becoming increasingly more difficult, with regard to homeless individuals who are living in over-crowded houses, sofa surfing, relationship breakdowns etc. etc. And with the LHA rate being extremely low and discriminative due to age barriers, I do not think we should be building all these over-priced apartments/flats, what we need is affordable rent, or Manchesters version of affordable rent (30%) homes for people who make this City what it is and not what the corporate lot want. Bring back social housing or what i remember it as…. Council Housing!! Thank you.

By Kevin Houten

@Kevin Houten. The two are not mutually exclusive. Government policy needs to change to kick start social housing, however that should not preclude private developers from building schemes like this.

By Manc

Steve brings up a good point. This neighbourhood looks to become one of the densist residential areas of the country but there are very few services and shops. The nearest doctor if I’m not mistaken is over the bridge on the other side of the Mancunian Way, which is not a route many people feel comfortable doing when its dark in winter. I


People need to start paying their own way like the rest of us and not rely on tax payers to look after them. This is why Labour will never win again.


@Kevin Houten – I think the discussions regarding apartments being built in the city centre and social housing are two different things. The realty is that these developments are built by private companies whose primary goal is to make a profit (nothing wrong with that). The truth is that private companies are never going to build real affordable housing, at least not on the scale needed to make a dent in the housing problem. I have young family members who live in Hulme and Chorlton who are trying to get on the housing ladder so I understand the issue.

I also don’t think this narrative of us and them helps anybody – I too grew up in Hulme (lived in John Nash Crescent) but have also lived in a city centre apartment. I’m Manc through and through and just someone who’s worked hard and made a bit of money. People like us shouldn’t be made to feel like outsiders just because we have done well for ourselves. The real problem is that successive governments (from all parties) have totally neglected to build any social housing for years – it’s the only way we are going solve this problem. However, that would take a complete about turn in how things have been done for the last 30 years and I’m not optimistic that’s going to happen.

By Manc Man

There is a medical centre (already approved I understand) under Elizabeth tower.

By Haich

@Kevin Houten Agreed….but I don’t understand why the working class (like me) & social housing ‘needs’ to be in the City Centre? Just take a look at any major city in the world, the once working class areas move further afield as the City grows. Brixton, Elephant & Castle, Brooklyn etc It’s an inevitability. A natural evolution of a thriving city.

By Haich

Why does social housing need to be in the city centre? How many working-class or low income families live in Central London, NYC (Brooklyn etc)? If you want social housing there is property and land to developed in the city’s fringes – Broughton, Moston, Gorton, Ardwick, Wythenshawe etc. City centres are where you should aspire to be. As a young professional far from ready from starting a family I would love to live in a 50th floor apartment in the centre of Manchester but I can’t quite afford that just yet. So why should my taxes go towards providing someone else the opportunity of that?

By Anonymous

I’m a young professional and I couldn’t afford to live in the city centre so I live outside it but near a tram stop for easy access. Funny how the “working classes” weren’t bothered about living in the city centre in the 1990s and 2000s and now that it’s fashionable all of a sudden they want in and they expect the rest of us to subsidise it for them. There are reams and reams of social, council and affordable housing estates across Manchester in places like Wythenshawe, Clayton, Moss Side etc.

I also don’t believe you have to be “working class” to be considered a Manc. That kind of parochial attitude is very un-Mancunian

By Anonymous

I agree with many of the comments about the lack of social housing in the city centre. This is prime real estate, we need social housing, but does it need to be in the most expensive neighbourhoods? I would love to live by the coast, overlooking the sea, but properties and land like that is far above my pay grade. That’s a luxury like if I wanted a TV, I buy the model that fits my economic ability. Sure, I’d love the largest screen with the most features, but that isn’t my right. It’s the same with social housing – we as a nation need to look after those less fortunate than us – this is a social responsibility. But ensuring the rights of everyone to have a clean, safe and comfortable home is different than insuring the right everyone has to live in the most desirable locations.


we’ve won the POOLS

By Anonymous

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