st michael’s, manchester

St Michael’s is a mixed-use development on the site of the former police station and synagogue, between Jacksons Row and Bootle Street, adjacent to Albert Square, and the historic core.

A previous proposal for the site by another architect, met with widespread objection from the general public and particularly from Historic England due to the historic context of the site, demolition of existing buildings, the potentially negative impact on the Conservation Area, and on the setting of nearby listed buildings including the Grade I listed Town Hall, and Grade II* listed Town Hall extension and Central Reference Library.

We were approached by Manchester City Council, to evaluate previous proposals and subsequently to explore an alternative strategy for the site. Proposals comprise a new 150,000 sqft Grade A office building over ground floor retail, sited immediately behind the retained Portland Stone element of the original police station, converted to a 30-bedroom boutique hotel, with a restaurant incorporated in a glazed addition at roof level.

The Abercrombie pub is retained, fronting onto a new south facing public square defined by the new 9 storey office building to the east and a new 38 storey mixed use podium and tower building to the west. The 6-storey mixed use podium comprises ground floor retail below a new synagogue, a spa facility, banqueting hall and conference facilities linked to a new 5-star hotel. The hotel lounge and bar are located at podium level surrounded by external landscaped rooftop, with 12 storeys of hotel rooms and 20 floors of residential above.