PLANS to construct a cluster of new skyscrapers - including Manchester’s tallest tower – on the site of Castlefield’s Owen Street car park have just been approved (with provisions) by the council.
Over 100 people signed a petition to block the construction of the towers
The scheme - lodged by CQ Investments (a subsidiary of Renaker Build) and designed by architect Ian Simpson – features four glazed towers of 37, 44, 50 and 64 storeys, comprising over 1500 new luxury apartments.
At just over 200m, the tallest of the new towers would create the fifth tallest building in the UK, dwarfing Manchester’s current tallest building, Beetham Tower, at 169m.
The ambitious plans also include: a 4600 sq m public square, 650 car parking spaces, 790 cycle parking spaces, four retail units, a tennis court, a swimming pool, a gym and residents’ rooftop terrace and private garden.
Forming part of the wider Great Jackson Street development, ground works at the four acre site have already begun, with completion expected by 2020.
Andy Finch, Head of Sales at Renaker Build, said: “We are thrilled to have received permission for our latest development which will be the first within the Great Jackson Street framework, creating a new community at the southern gateway to the core of Manchester city centre.
“We are fully committed to the redevelopment of the wider Great Jackson Street area and further regeneration and development will follow alongside our Owen Street scheme. This development has been designed with a wide range of apartment types, the vast majority of which are significantly more generous than purchasers will find elsewhere in the city.
“With the larger unit sizes, a high-end specification and residents’ amenities that are genuinely unmatched anywhere else in Manchester, this will undoubtedly become the new destination of choice for city centre residents”.
Though not everyone is as chuffed with the lofty new scheme.
Over 100 people signed a petition to block the construction of the towers, with objections ranging from the height and scale of the development to the lack of affordable housing and the loss of light.
Local Labour Councillor, Kevin Peel, told Confidential: “The council needs to think very carefully about the sort of city centre it is creating when massive developments are being approved on a monthly basis which contain no affordable housing and which will be out of reach either to buy or to rent for anyone earning the average Manchester wage - or considerably higher.
"It isn't right and as a Labour council we have a duty to do better."
Renaker's is the latest in an aggregation of towering schemes proposed for south central Manchester, including the approved 35 storey Whitworth Street West tower, the nearby 27 storey Axis building and the 42 storey River Street tower.
Elsewhere, Renaker recently gained approval for a new 44-storey tower in Salford's Greengate development.