Manchester's most prolific architects, 2018

In a year which has seen development and construction in Manchester hit new heights, UrbInfo looks at which architects have been the busiest over the past twelve months.


Most prolific residential architect, 2018

There have been planning applications submitted by 28 separate architects for over 5,500 new homes to Manchester, Salford and Trafford councils in 2018, in 38 separate schemes.


Out of the 38 new residential schemes proposed for Manchester in 2018, eight of them were designed by two architects - Beech Design & Build, and Simpson-Haugh. In total, Simpson-Haugh have revealed proposals for over 1,600 new homes in Manchester this year, topping all other architects in this category.


All four Manchester schemes designed by Simpson-Haugh this year are over 30 storeys in height. Among them is Renaker and Simpson-Haugh's 52 & 22-storey Elizabeth Tower & The Crown scheme, which was submitted for planning in April 2018, approved in June, started groundworks in July and started construction in August. The two skyscrapers form the latest instalment of Renaker's Great Jackson skyscraper cluster, being built at the southern end of Deansgate.

Renaker and Simpson Haugh's Elizabeth Tower, which is now under construction

Other schemes which Simpson-Haugh have been involved in this year include Arundel Street, in Castlefield. Designed for Logik Developments - who lists Andrew Flintoff as a director - the scheme was refused planning permission in September on the grounds of it being too tall for its surroundings.


Two Simpson-Haugh schemes are currently awaiting approval. In Salford, Vista Tower was revealed by Simpson-Haugh in March. At 34 storeys and 107 metres in height, it will be the tallest building in Salford Quays if delivered by developers Forshaw. Meanwhile in New Cross, Cable Swan Ltd and Simpson-Haugh teamed up to reveal their skyscraper proposal for Swan Street - a 30 storey tower containing 358 Build-to-Rent apartments.


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Vista Tower at Salford Quays. Designed by Simpson-Haugh for Forshaw, it could become the tallest building in Salford Quays

Second to Simpson-Haugh in terms of number of new homes proposed is Fielden Clegg Bradley (FCB). They revealed proposals in 2018 for 887 new homes across two separate schemes, both of which are still awaiting planning approval. The first is the much-lauded replacement of the office block at 20-36 High Street, in the Northern Quarter. The scheme features a mansard roof which takes inspiration from Manchester landmarks such as Sunlight House. At 22-storeys, it will contain 361 apartments sat above a 12,000 sqft retail and leisure arcade which is planned to link the Arndale with the Northern Quarter.


FCB's second project of 2018 sees them regenerating the waterfront at Pomona. Commissioned by X1 Developments, X1 Manchester Waters Phase 2 will see the construction of three new residential blocks containing 526 apartments in total.


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Most prolific hotel architect, 2018

Stephenson Studio are 2018's most prolific hotel architect, having submitted planning applications for 685 new hotel bedrooms across two schemes. In Piccadilly, the team outlined a proposal to bring the old Union Bank building back into use, integrating it with a 23-storey tower for Japanese budget hotel brand Tokoyo Inns. If approved, it will bring 356 hotel rooms to the city. Stephen Levrant were appointed as heritage architects for the development. Further down Portland Street, Stephenson Studio were also involved in submitting a planning application for a 17-storey Clayton Hotel on the corner of Sackville Street. After gaining planning approval in June, the 329-bedroom hotel is due to start construction in 2019.

Tokoyo Hotel on Piccadilly, designed by Stephenson Studio

Second to Stephenson Studio were 5Plus, who submitted a planning application in May for the refurbishment of John Dalton House, on the corner of Deansgate and JDS, to provide 261 new hotel bedrooms. The hotel will be occupied by QBIC when it opens in 2020.


In total, 1,653 hotel bedrooms have been proposed in Manchester this year, across 9 separate schemes.


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Most prolific student accommodation architect, 2018

2018 has seen a boom in student accommodation in the city, as demand begins to far exceed supply. 2,724 new student bedspaces have been proposed for the city this year, across 8 separate schemes.


850 of those bedspaces - 31% of the total for 2018 - are in Student Castle's gigantic Hulme Street Tower, designed by Glenn Howells. At 55-storeys and 165 metres in height, it has the potential to be Manchester's third-tallest building when complete, and is only 4 metres shorter than Beetham tower.

Proposal by Student Castle and Glenn Howells for a 55-storey student accommodation tower off Oxford Road could become Manchester's third-tallest building

Nearby, Simpson-Haugh teamed up with Unite Student to submit a planning application in April for 1-5 New Wakefield Street. The 32-storey tower, which contains 603 student bedspaces, is a redesign of a 2017 planning application, also designed by Simpson-Haugh. The new design, which features a change to the cladding, was approved in June and started construction in July.


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Most prolific commercial architect, 2018

All office schemes revealed in Manchester in 2018 have each been designed by separate architects, so there is no clear winner in this category. Cartwright Pickard designed the most space - 341,400 sqft at Allied London's redesigned Manchester Goods Yard scheme in St Johns, which was revealed in October and is yet to win planning permission.

Cartwright Pickard redesigned Allied London's Manchester Goods Yard scheme

5Plus have also been busy working with Ask Real Estate at First Street Plot 9A, which contains 160,000 sqft of office space below a 205-bedroom hotel.


Meanwhile, back at St Johns, Allied London appointed Denton Corker Marshall (DCM) to design The Media Building at St Johns Place. Targeted at creative startups, The Media Building will contain over 102,000 sqft of space and is on the doorstep of Spinningfields.


In total, 814,764 sqft of office space has been proposed in Manchester this year, across 9 separate schemes.


You can download detailed market research intelligence on all Manchester residential schemes by clicking here.

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