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Is The Wait Over For Redevelopment Of The Deansgate Ramada Site?

Ramada Complex, Deansgate, Manchester
The Ramada Complex, Deansgate

The final 3.4-acre slice of Manchester's 1999 post-bomb redevelopment plan is on the brink of redevelopment. Maybe.

Manchester City Council's executive is being recommended to approve plans for the 1970s Ramada Complex. The site has long been an eyesore at the northern end of Deansgate, as a report by council officers acknowledges. The report says the buildings, now close to some of the city's smartest apartments and high-end retail, "makes no positive visual contribution to the surrounding environment."

The revised plans mean just more than half the site will be open space, including turning the northern end of Deansgate into a tree-lined boulevard linking to the wider open spaces around the Cathedral.

Irish developer West Properties was behind the last attempt at redevelopment. Permission for a 280K SF office scheme along with a four- to five-star hotel and 250 apartments lapsed in 2014. Efforts to tempt department store John Lewis to take the site for a city centre outlet got nowhere, and Urban & Civic acquired the site in 2014.

Since then, progress on a 600-unit apartment scheme and 250-bed four- to five-star hotel has been slow. The report blames the difficulty of demolition and phased development on a tightly constrained site.

Marriott operates The Renaissance hotel on the site, which is named after the previous occupier, Ramada.