£1m investment in city centre Metrolink stop
A new public realm scheme, glass lift and staircase are set to transform one of Manchester city centre’s busiest tram stops.
The new access from Great Bridgewater Street to the Deansgate-Castlefield stop would create a smooth route for Metrolink passengers coming off the tram who wish to head north further into the city, transferring them down to ground floor level through two new pockets of public space.
The project would deliver extensive new high-quality landscaping at both street and platform level and would also see a section of the bridge over Great Bridgwater Street removed.
Mike Mellor, head of commercial at TfGM said: “Currently passengers using the Northern side of the Deansgate-Castlefield tram stop face a difficult route, past Manchester Central’s goods yard and either through the Great Northern complex to Deansgate or down steps onto Windmill Street.
“The new lift and stairs will make the tram much more accessible and the new landscaping will echo the design already in place to create an integrated and really pleasant route for passengers using both the tram stop and the linked Deansgate Railway station.
“It would create the third direct pedestrian route to the tram stop and, crucially, be accessible for all.”
The £1m project is being jointly funded by private developers, Ask Real Estate and Salboy as part of preparatory works for Viadux, a £300m development of a 40-storey residential tower and a 14-storey block of offices on the former Bauer Millet site next to Manchester Central Convention Complex.
Viadux has been designed by SimpsonHaugh & Partners who have also designed the lift, staircase and landscaping.
Simon Ismail, director of Salboy said: “This is an important package of works, designed to create easier access to public transport for everyone and creating a distinct setting for the development through high-quality public realm.
“While the main entrance to the residential tower will be on Great Bridgewater Street, there will also be direct residents’ access at podium level framed by the new landscaping.”
Jamie Hills, development director from Ask, said: “The new lift and staircase form an integral part of the connections to and across the Viadux site and will benefit everyone using the Deansgate–Castlefield tram stop, giving an easier route for people to connect around this part of the city.
“The new landscaping at podium level will extend the existing treatment around the station, mixing hard landscaping and low-level planting and there will be a new pocket of public realm on Great Bridgewater Street at the base of the stairs and lift.”
The removal of a section of the bridge will allow more natural daylight onto Great Bridgewater Street where Grade II-listed archways will be converted to retail and leisure use as part of the Viadux development.
A planning application for the works has been submitted for Manchester City Council and, if approved, the work would be carried out in phases with the staircase and lift installed in the first phase later this year and the podium landscaping on completion of the residential tower.