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Plans unveiled for a new 18-storey ‘globally leading’ workspace in Manchester city centre

The Alberton will offer one of the most "comprehensive wellness experiences in a workplace" that's ever been seen in the UK. 

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 22nd December 2021

Bruntwood Works has announced proposals for a workspace in Manchester city centre that it says it’s “capable of competing with the best commercial buildings in the world”.

This will be done through the redevelopment of Alberton House into ‘The Alberton’.

The proposals for the new workspace include replacing the current Alberton House on St. Mary’s Parsonage to create a “striking” 18-storey building that will become the flagship property in Bruntwood Works’ Pioneer programme. 

The plans include the creation of a unique rooftop pavilion on the 17th and 18th floors that will house a “state-of-the-art” health and wellness centre, which will benefit from 360-degree views across the city that can also be enjoyed from the adjoining landscaped roof terrace.

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Once complete, Bruntwood Works say The Alberton will offer one of the most “comprehensive wellness experiences in a workplace” that’s ever been seen in the UK. 

Designed by EPR Architects to represent Manchester’s industrial past in a contemporary aesthetic, Bruntwood Works also said The Alberton will create “a new standard of workspace” in the city that will compare to the best on the world stage through.

A big part of the building being able to compete is thanks to its sustainability credentials. 

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After Bruntwood became the first property company in the UK to sign up to the ‘World Green Building Council Net Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment’ back in 2018, the group has since  outlined its ambitions for all areas under its control to operate at NZC by 2030, and all buildings to have net zero embodied carbon by 2050.

This means that sustainability is a key factor of this groundbreaking Pioneer redevelopment.

The Alberton will operate at net zero carbon and is targeting BREEAM New Construction 2018 Excellent Rating and NABERS UK Design for Performance Agreement 5.5 star.

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The development will feature glazing detailing to reduce solar gain, ambient loop heating and cooling to allow for greater efficiency and zonal control, and the building will also encourage active commuting – with a newly created basement space offering extensive cycle storage with charging lockers, shower rooms, and vanity areas.

The new destination will also welcome the best of Manchester’s food and drink scene, as there’ll be a waterfront community of restaurant and bar operators, with an immersive food and drink experience on the ground floor. 

Speaking on the unveiling of the proposals, Ciara Keeling – CEO at Bruntwood Works – said: “Our Pioneer programme has always been about realising our vision for the future of the workspace, and we’re proud to have created some of the best workspaces in the country through it.

“With The Alberton, we are aiming to bring a truly world-class asset to Manchester as the city continues to compete on a global stage for inward investment.”

Artist’s impression of The Alberton from Trinity Bridge / Credit: Bruntwood Works

She continued: “The office is no longer a place you have to go to, nor just a place where you go to work.

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“Workspaces need to become experiential places that encapsulate what we love about our thriving city centres, but can also help to provide productivity, balance and wellness to our lives.”

Following other leading workspaces transformed as part of the Bruntwood Works Pioneer programme – including Blackfriars House, 111 Piccadilly, and Bloc – The Alberton will offer a wide array of workspaces for individuals, start-ups, and larger firms.

The mezzanine workspace – which will be accessible to those with memberships to Bruntwood Works’ spaces, or via its Pay as You Go offering – will offer a cosy coworking lounge and flexible working zones.

Workspace floors will feature views over the River Irwell.

There will also be a range of community spaces available to foster collaboration and inclusivity. 

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Keen to have your say? The community is invited to share their views on the plans by visiting thealberton.co.uk, or by emailing [email protected] by 23rd January 2022.

Featured Image – Bruntwood Works