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SimpsonHaugh lops a third off Flintoff-backed Manchester tower

SimpsonHaugh revised Arundel Street development March 2019
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SimpsonHaugh has cut 12 storeys from a proposed residential tower backed by cricketer-turned-developer Andrew Flintoff in Manchester

The AJ100 practice unveiled a new-look scheme for the site on Arundel Street in the city’s Castlefield district on behalf of the England cricket legend’s Logik Developments.

An earlier proposal for a 35-storey tower and 10-floor sister block was thrown out by Manchester City Council’s Planning and Highways Committee last October.

Councillors ruled that the scheme ‘would be overly dominate and harm the form, character and setting of the Castlefield Conservation Area and the setting of the adjacent Grade II*-listed former St George’s Church’.

Although Historic England did not raise an objection to the original plans, a 638-name petition and 47 individual complaints were received. Concerns raised included perceived overdevelopment and impact on views of the church, which now contains luxury apartments.

After talks with local residents and significant redesign work, revised plans will be showcased at a consultation event in Hulme this week.

The main tower has been scaled down to 23 storeys and the overall number of apartments in the scheme reduced from 386 to 355.

The tower’s position has been altered to reflect local concerns. Other changes include provision for landscaping and improved public access to the Bridgewater Canal.

Plans to redevelop a former DOT motorcycle works building to create homes and commercial space on the ground floor remain intact.

SimpsonHaugh founding partner Rachel Haugh said: ‘We greatly enjoyed the process of consultation and design development explored with the Britannia Basin Community Forum.

‘The outcome is a proposed built form, landscape and pedestrian experience which we believe will contribute positively to the area.’

A spokeswoman for the Britannia Basin Community Forum said: ‘The collaborative approach with SimpsonHaugh has been successful to date and we are hopeful of a design that contributes significantly to the community as a whole.’

Flintoff set up Logik Developments alongside cousin Neil Spencer and business partner Tony Bhatti in August 2017.

Spencer said this week: ‘We are delighted to be presenting our redesigned scheme, which we believe captures all the concerns expressed at the previous planning committee.

‘We believe that working with the local community groups and rethinking the project with the design team will result in a development that will have a positive impact on the immediate vicinity and the city as a whole.’

Meanwhile, SimpsonHaugh has also has set out designs for an 11-storey office block at Four Angel Square within Manchester’s NOMA development.

SimpsonHaugh sketch for Four Angel Square Manchester

SimpsonHaugh sketch for Four Angel Square Manchester

Source: SimpsonHaugh

SimpsonHaugh sketch for Four Angel Square Manchester

Backed by developer MEPC, this scheme would provide 18,500m² of workspace as well as shops or restaurants on the ground floor. Public realm improvements would form part of an upgraded link to 3DReid’s One Angel Square.

A consultation event was held for Four Angel Square at the Old Bank Residency on Hanover Street on Thursday 21 March.

MEPC head of development Paul Pavia said: ‘As part of Four Angel Square, we will be creating an extensive area of new high quality public realm on what is currently surface car parking, plus bar and restaurant space at ground floor to bring life to this area. We have a clear vision and aspiration to provide physical and visual connection between this part of NOMA and the listed estate and Sadler’s Yard.’

NOMA will provide 230,000m² of new-build and renovated office space as well as housing, retail and leisure facilities and public realm works.

The latest proposals join a line of SimpsonHaugh schemes in Manchester. In October the practice unveiled plans for a 21-storey hotel a stone’s throw from its landmark 47-storey Beetham Tower.

Manchester City Council last year approved SimpsonHaugh’s transformation of the Great Northern Warehouse area of the city.

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