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The Spinningfields development, created by Allied London in association with Manchester City Council, is possibly the most exciting urban redevelopment project in Manchester city centre. Their previous collaboration produced No.1 Piccadilly Gardens. The site covers much of the area between Deansgate, Quay Street, Bridge Street and the River Irwell. 20 buildings are projected to take up the space on completion over a 6 acre (4.5m sq m) site transforming a city quarter into a modern business district.
Work is ongoing at the project but many buildings are now in use, including the Civil Justice Centre, 1 Spinningfields Square, which is home to the Royal Bank of Scotland and Wagamama restaurant, and the Guardian Media Group building at 2 Hardman Street. The latter building was formerly located where 3 Hardman Street now stands. The Bank of New York Mellon are one of the latest tenants to sign up for space, taking another 50,000 sq ft of offices at the new 3 Hardman Street which is scheduled to be completed in the autumn. This will help them to add another 400 to the workforce of 800 that they already employ in Manchester. These buildings are clearly visible from the main vantage point on Deansgate and provide an idea of the projectís image once completed.
The gleaming, corporate look belies the fact that this is a mixed development with primarily office space, but also retail and residential space, including 391 of the Leftbank apartments and a 200 bed, 5 star hotel. Restaurants such as Strada and Ha Ha Bar and Grill have already opened at Left Bank in Irwell Square. Designer fashion and lifestyle brands are also earmarked for various units within The Avenue at Spinningfields, and include Chanel, Vivienne Westwood, Abercrombie & Fitch, Paul Smith, DKNY and Armani.
Transport links around the development are already in place, with bus routes along Deansgate, Bridge Street and Quay Street in addition to a Metrolink stop at St Peters Square, a 10 minute walk from Deansgate. One of the buses that serves this route is the Metroshuttle, a free service that connects Spinningfields with many of the cityís landmarks including Victoria and Piccadilly rail stations.
The desired end result of the detailed designing, planning and construction of Spinningfields is to create a business quarter to emulate that of any downtown sector within a cosmopolitan American city.