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Rooftop terraces plan for central Manchester development

Rooftop terraces plan for central Manchester development

Most recent residential developments in central Manchester have involved towering steel and glass apartment buildings, but one new project in the Castlefield area contains some rather more traditional housing in a novel setting.

De Trafford Estates has unveiled its plans for a mixed-use development in Cornbrook that will include several residential blocks of up to 16 storeys in height, the tallest of these being a typical steel and glass block.

However, the Ellesmere Street development also includes a converted brewery and warehouse that will only be five storeys high. On its roof will be perched a series of terraced houses, with pitched roofs.

The terraces will invoke the style of housing that is typical in large parts of the city, particularly areas such as Moss Side, Gorton and Longsight.

Overall, this novel development will feature 419 homes and 30,000 sq ft of commercial space, with the latter all being located on the ground floor.

Until the late 1990s, very few people lived in central Manchester, but the last 20 years has seen a transformation of the area, with a huge number of new apartment blocks being built. Many more are planned, including several skyscrapers.

In this context, the building of terraced houses may seem an unusual development, and stranger still given their rooftop locations. However, it is not unique as the Kampus Development near Piccadilly station is to feature a timber 'village' of Dutch-style timber houses on top of the refurbished 1960s Aytoun Building, which was formerly a teaching block for Manchester Metropolitan University. Such developments may be part of efforts to bring more families into the city centre and give the area more of a social mix.

The growth of the city centre population has prompted proposals for radical boundary changes. The Boundary Commission's proposals for the city council's wards include a proposal to split the present City Centre ward in two, with territory also being taken from a couple of neighbouring wards. The changes aim to reflect the rapid growth of population in central Manchester in recent years, which helped the city display the fastest rate of population growth in England outside London in the 2011 census.

Image: iStock


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