A synagogue in Manchester city centre has agreed to sell up to make way for a £200m tower block spearheaded by Gary Neville.
The former Manchester United defender has been pushing forward with plans for his St Michael’s development since 2016 – announcing a vision for a building which includes apartments, offices, restaurants and a five-star hotel.
Original plans were to bulldoze the Manchester Reform Synagogue off Deansgate and rebuild it – with the adjacent Sir Ralph Abercromby Pub due for demolition.
But the development was met with resistance from the public and heritage group Historic England – who expressed concerns that the buildings would harm the nearby Grade I listed town hall and Central Library.
Neville’s initial plans for Jackson Row and Bootle Street were scrapped in 2017 and the blueprints have since been modified.
US Investor KKR has now formed a joint venture with Neville’s company Relentless to take the project forward.
New plans involve the synagogue moving to a different building, whilst the Abercromby pub will be refurbished and incorporated into the development, reports Place North West.
A spokesman for Manchester Reform Synagogue said the “membership preferred to use the finance from the £15m sale to relocate and secure the future for decades to come rather than wait to be part of a five-star hotel and residential tower”.
Work on St Michael’s will start towards the end of 2021, with the first phase expected to take around two years to build.
Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: “Navigating the complexities of this development within the constraints of the site has undoubtedly been challenging, but we know the outcome is going to be truly transformational for this part of the city centre.
“This type of investment is the precise antidote we need in the city to balance the economic impact of the last year.”