Work on Gary Neville’s long-awaited development in Manchester city center is finally underway after overcoming a series of setbacks over the last decade.
The refurbishment of the old Bootle Street Police Station has already started.
This first phase of the £200m plan will see the construction of a nine-storey office block in Albert Square with a ‘high-end’ rooftop restaurant and terrace bar.
READ MORE: The big developments that will change the face of Manchester in 2022
Manchester City Council today (Jan 31) granted a late-night booze license for the Sky Bar facility, which won’t open for at least two years.
It comes after residents objected to a request to sell alcohol at the rooftop restaurant and bar until 3am, but this request was dropped.
Councillors, neighbors and licensees withdrew their objections after the applicant agreed that the terrace would close to customers at 11pm.
Speaking on behalf of St Michaels UK Propco Limited at a town hall hearing, Felicity Tullock said preliminary work on the site has just started and the first phase of the project, including these facilities, will be ready by 2024.
But she revealed that a ‘high-end’ operator has already lined up to run it.
She said: “We are applying for the premises license now because we want to provide comfort to the incoming tenant.
“We are not in a position to say at this time who that tenant is, but that deal has not been closed.
“But it is going to be a well-known, internationally recognized high-end bar and restaurant operator that would be in keeping with the high quality of this scheme and the development as a whole.”
The restaurant will be open all day serving breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner and cocktails, according to the Kuits Solicitors licensing agent.
The local license allows it to open from 8 a.m. to 3:30 a.m. every day except on Sundays, when it must close at 1:30 a.m., with the last orders half an hour before.
Alcohol can be sold and live music can be played on the premises from 10am
But the terrace must close to customers, except smokers, at 11:00 p.m.
Tulloch said the closest residents who would be affected by any noise from the terrace will be those who live within the St Michael development.
She said, “It can’t be that this location causes a nuisance because those units have to be sold and they can’t be bothered.”
Jo is a local democracy reporter covering councils, the NHS and other local authorities in Manchester and Greater Manchester. He previously covered local government in Bolton, Bury, Salford and Wigan.
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The second phase of the scheme includes a 41-storey tower with a hotel on the lower floors with residential apartments above and a public plaza below.
The redevelopment of Jackson’s Row opposite Albert Square was finally approved in 2018 following a long-running saga sparked by major backlash to the plans.
The plans were radically redesigned after Historic England strongly criticized the proposal, warning that it would cause a “high level of damage” to the historic town hall.
Revised plans were eventually given the green light which included a five-star boutique hotel, offices, bars, restaurants and a public garden.
Construction company Bowmer and Kirkland (B&K) was appointed to build an office block after the five-star boutique hotel in previous plans was scrapped.
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