Plans submitted to turn ‘challenging’ area of Manchester city centre into ‘vibrant neighbourhood’

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 10th May 2023

Two planning applications have been submitted to turn what is described as a “challenging” area of Manchester city centre into a “vibrant neighbourhood”.

As part of the masterplan to “progress the vision” for the city’s emerging Red Bank neighbourhood, Far East Consortium (FEC) – the developer behind Manchester’s Victoria North joint venture partnership with Manchester City Council – has this week submitted ambitious plans to transform over 30 acres of largely brownfield site into a thriving community.

Red Bank is one of the first of seven neighbourhoods being regenerated as part of Victoria North – which will create 15,000 new homes over the next decade.

These new plans include 4,800 new homes, alongside a range of commercial and social facilities

Developers say the plans represent “one of the largest residential planning applications” to come forward in Manchester in recent years.

Plans submitted to turn ‘challenging’ area of Manchester city centre into ‘vibrant neighbourhood’ / Credit: FEC

The planning submissions are said to have followed an “extensive design and consultation process” to develop a masterplan for the neighbourhood centred on FEC’s ‘Wild Urbanism concept’ – which the developer says prioritises green space, biodiversity, active travel, and public realm alongside city centre living.

Initial plans propose up to 3,250 of the new homes and more than 160,000 sq ft of non-residential floor space – including commercial uses, a health centre, primary school, residential amenities, and community spaces – while detailed plans have also been submitted for three plots on Dantzic Street, which is adjacent to FEC’s 634-home Victoria Riverside scheme.


This proposed scheme of 1,550 homes would see seven buildings varying in height between six and 34 storeys constructed – with a mix of one, two, and three-bed apartments and townhouses that developers say cater for “a diverse mix” of people and of type and tenure of home, including build to rent (BTR), affordable, and open market sale. 

Away from the residential offering, the outline proposals also include the creation of new public realm with “extensive areas” of landscaping, greenspace, and wetlands aimed at supporting a minimum 10% biodiversity net gain across the neighbourhood.

While the detailed proposals also include a new high street, including 20,000 sq ft of commercial and retail space “earmarked” for local independent businesses.


Again, “extensive landscaping” would be carried out on Dantzic Street and Dalton Street – with tree planting, resurfacing, widened footpaths, and new cycle lanes.

Hilary Brett, project director at FEC, called Red Bank is a “unique area of the city”, and said there is “huge opportunity to enhance what already exists” and to create “a vibrant neighbourhood” with these newly-submitted plans.

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Cllr Gavin White, Manchester City Council’s executive member for housing and development, added: “This area at the edge of the city centre is a challenging prospect, but these planning applications are part of an ambitious vision for this new neighbourhood and community, bringing thousands of new homes, investment and life to a part of Manchester that has been underused for many years.”

Featured Image – FEC