Including a NEW Piccadilly Gardens, MIF's The Factory, and the city's first park for 100 years...
The First Light Pavilion at Jodrell Bank
COVID -19 set the construction of this new visitor attraction at Jodrell Bank back a bit but it’s still pencilled in to be finished in the latter half of 2021. The centrepiece of the project is the First Light Pavilion, a stunning new building set on the Jodrell Bank gardens and home to a new gallery, an immersive projection space, auditorium and new education hub.
Work has continued in earnest throughout 2020 on the large KAMPUS development at the top of Canal Street on the old MMU Aytoun Campus. They’ll be officially opening up their first phase sometime in Jan/Feb, with subsequent buildings (including the old Minto & Turner Warehouse, and the 60s Office Block) shortly thereafter. 2021 will also see the arrival of new independents into the square, as well as on their new Little David Street walkway.
Mayfield’s Public Park
Works began on the city’s first park in 100 yeas back in December as part of the extensive new Mayfield development just on the other side of Piccadilly Train Station. It’s set to be a massive undertaking, with 1,500 new homes, office space, the re-development of Temperance Street, shops, a 650-bed hotel and of course – the 6.5 acre public park. Will the park be completed in 2021? I’ll eat my hat if it isn’t.
This world-class cultural space just behind the Science & Industry Museum is set to be a year-round home for Manchester International Festival, featuring “one of Europe’s most ambitious and adventurous creative programmes”. After a series of setbacks and a few funding troubles, the construction is back on track, and with MIF due to be on again this Summer – we should hopefully expect The Factory to open at some point. Fingers crossed.
Swan Street Development
Currently an MOT garage and a bit of a courtyard, CAPITAL&CENTRIC and Kamani Properties bought this site opposite Mackie Mayor at the beginning of 2020 and since then not much has really happened. Well, it all started happening towards the end of the year, with a venue called ‘Ramona’ set to open early in 2021, a Detroit pizzeria from the team from Albert Schloss. It’s only temporary though as the developers plan 120 new homes, bars, and a roof terrace.
Piccadilly Gardens ‘Re-Invention’?
November 2020 saw the dreaded Berlin Wall get knocked down in Piccadilly Gardens, just a tiny part of the council’s well overdue re-invention of the scratty square. A public consultation on the plans for the gardens took place all the way back at the beginning of 2020, with councillors approving a £2m improvement project in August. So we should hopefully see some massive changes in 2021, with an improvement of lighting, raising the grassed areas, new planting, re-laying damaged pathways, creation of a children’s play area, replacement of existing street furniture, and the transformation of the Pavilion Wall.
London Road Fire Station
Home of some serious development issues over the last 30 years, work began on the London Road Fire Station back in 2018, with the aim to develop a 91-room hotel, some significant retail and restaurant space as well as an underground events space. It looks like it’ll be bloody brilliant, and with original plans to finish in 2020, 2021 will hopefully be the year those doors finally swing open.
RHS Garden Bridgewater
Set to open in May 2021, the RHS Garden Bridgewater is a new spectacular 154-acre garden in the historic grounds of Worsley New Hall in Salford. As the biggest gardening scheme in the whole of Europe, the development has turned the grounds into a beautiful green place for the local community and visitors to enjoy all year-round – being voted one of the most important “conservation and community projects” in the world at the moment.
Oldham’s Egyptian Rooms Food Hall
A brand-new offering right in the centre of Oldham, the Egyptian Rooms were announced as the final phase of the development of their historic Town Hall, an endeavour that has created a pretty impressive cinema and restaurants – all keeping in line with the building’s history and heritage. When they were pissing about down in the bowels of the Hall, someone uncovered the largely untouched Egyptian Rooms and plans are afoot to turn them into a Food Hall. 2021 will definitely be the year that this happens.
This huge development over on Oxford Road has heard the clanging of hammers for the past few years now, with completion date on the final building pencilled in for April 2021. Will this be the case? Well, a recent visit down there a couple of weeks ago has shown some pretty impressive progress, with the addition of the full completion of most buildings. The main cherry on top is definitely ‘Symphony Park’ – the large public space right in the centre.