Opal Property Group, Modus Properties and Bruntwood were all on the short list for Manchester University’s gateway development project recently, and VP were on the Opal team alongside David Ogden, Tony Catherall and Marc Henshaw from Lewis and Hickey (Manchester).
The project, worth upwards of £35m, will include a new hotel, conference facility and an executive education centre for Manchester Business School, as well as a makeover of MBS’s existing buildings on the junction of Booth St and Oxford Road and the redevelopment of the retail precinct.
The new buildings are expected to take space on the car park on Booth Street West.
The university’s contract notice called for “creative approaches” to the redevelopment of the site. The bidders are now in talks with the university and a final decision on the preferred developer is expected in the autumn.
MBS director Michael Luger wants better accommodation for delegates on executive education programmes. He has said that a facelift of the premises is needed if MBS is to project the image of a top international business school, he also said he was keen for the new buildings to be green.
“One of the pieces of the building plan will be a wing, which would house the Enterprise Centre and other activities in a very flashy building, which will be sustainable.” Barclays has recently announced that it is providing a £70m senior debt loan to Manchester Metropolitan University to allow it to develop its campus, which will include the construction of the new Business School.