City Centre

Abandoned Manchester railway arches to become shop and restaurant hub

The council is yet to approve the £4m scheme, but if successful it would transform the arches - the largest of their kind outside of London - into a new neighbourhood

Georgina Pellant Georgina Pellant - 17th April 2023

A row of empty Manchester railways that have sat empty for years is set to become a new shopping and dining hub, if plans submitted to council bosses are successful.

The railway arches behind Manchester Victoria railway station have long stood derelict, but now it appears that developers want to turn them into a row of shops, bars, restaurants and cafes for locals and visitors to enjoy.

The Arch Company, a national project that plans to transform 1,000 empty or derelict spaces across England and Wales by 2030, has its sights set on the location and has submitted plans to bring the ten arches back to life.

If successful the £4m scheme will become part of the national £200m Project 1000 scheme, which has already seen the developer purchase 253 spaces in Manchester and Salford, including arches on Temperance Street and Bennett Street.

According to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, the Victoria railway arches are the largest of their kind outside of the capital.


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Whilst acquiring its portfolio, the developer purchased a large range of spaces from Network Rail.


Archy 5, better known as the pop-up bikes shop, will remain open on Corporation Street throughout the redevelopment.

Arches beyond number 11, meanwhile, are not affected as they are not part of the project according to planning documents.

Speaking on the application, portfolio asset manager Rob Roddy said: “Corporation Street is a fantastic location for leisure and retail businesses to make their own – we see incredible potential in these railway arches.


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“As part of our development plan, Project 1000, we’re committed to investing in 1,000 spaces by 2030 and hope these arches in Manchester will form part of these plans.”

Featured image – The Arch Company