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What is the Spinningfields Project?
The Spinningfields regeneration project began in the early 2000s with the aim of transforming a former industrial area in Manchester into a new business hub. The project was funded by a mixture of public and private sectors, with major businesses keen to relocate to the Northern Powerhouse city. This was a result of the increasing costs and demand for office spaces in London. The project cost a total of £1.5 billion for the initial 20-building development.
Manchester offers residents many of the same amenities as London, with luxury shopping experiences, top-class eateries, and superb connectivity. At the time, Manchester was a very popular location to live, work and play. However, the city was unable to compete with London, as was the case with many Northern cities. Today, Northern Powerhouse cities are growing at a rate that London cannot compete with, thanks to improved funding and a series of successful regeneration projects, such as Spinningfields.
What is in Spinningfields?
Now, Spinningfields is often described as ‘the Canary Wharf of the North’, due to the industry-leading financial services which are located in the area. The buildings are home to anchor tenants such as Regus, Barclays, HSBC Bank, Grant Thornton, and Royal Bank of Scotland. This has been a huge economic benefit to the city, with thousands of jobs created for residents and increased investment in the area.
Additionally, the area has seen growth in amenities, mixed-use spaces, and leisure activities. This has seen the area become a tourist hotspot. This includes Manchester House, a £3 million fine-dining establishment, which opened in 2013. This is joined by popular high-street restaurants, fast-food eateries, and coffee shops. Furthermore, Spinningfields was named the most family-friendly area in Manchester in a study done by Premier Inn.
Is Spinningfields Environmentally Friendly?
Initially, the Spinningfields project moved towards carbon neutrality with the development of green spaces. Now, investors have decided to improve the area further. This will be achieved by introducing the Spinningfields Pavilion, a sustainable space. This will help the area move towards Manchester’s’ zero carbon goal by 2038.
Manchester City Council set the goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2038 and is implementing measures to make sure all major districts can contribute towards this. Spinningfields was built to minimise carbon emissions, with the buildings designed to achieve excellent environmental sustainability standards. Furthermore, the region was designed with improved walkability, meaning road congestion and vehicle usage is reduced compared to other areas of the city.
What are the Economic Benefits of Spinningfields?
So far, Spinningfields has helped to create over 10,000 new jobs for residents of Manchester. Most of these positions have been filled by skilled professionals working in the financial sector. This has helped Spinningfields contribute over £1 billion to Manchester’s economy over the last decade. This is through economic activity from residents, tourists, and professionals in the area. Furthermore, the area has attracted huge private investment to sustain, improve and expand upon the area.
This has had a ripple effect across the city, being a large contributor to the Media City development. Spinningfields helped the city generate the funding required to build Media City. The economic growth was a huge factor in attracting leading businesses such as ITV, BBC and the University of Salford to the area.
How Much Does Property Cost?
While the project has been highly successful in attracting major businesses, large office spaces and key amenities to the area. It has also created top-class accommodations for residents. This includes around 450 initial apartments developed in the area. The average value of a 2-bedroom flat in the area is currently £350,000, far higher than the city average of £250,000. This is due to the economic strength and desirability of the area.
The area commands an average rental price of £1,350pcm, much higher than the city average of £975pcm. This is due to the high demand in the area, with many skilled professionals looking for high-quality accommodation close to their employers. The cost of living in the area, while lower than in London, is representative of the success of the project. Growth in the area over a 20-year period has been incredible with a 330% rise in average property prices according to the Office for National Statistics.
The Spinningfields project is one of the most ambitious regeneration projects in UK history. Now the scheme has completed the initial stages of development, the significance of the social and economic impact the project has had on the city. The region contributes significantly to Manchester’s economy. While the initial stage is complete, the region is still benefitting from private investment and this will see the area sustained, improved, and expanded.
For investors, Spinningfields has provided some fantastic opportunities around Manchester. While the average property prices are a lot higher than in other areas of the city. The effects on demand, employment and economic growth have benefitted the wider city. Therefore, investors can benefit from buying property around the area, to take advantage of the overflow of demand in the area. Overall, Spinningfields is a shining example of what can be achieved with urban regeneration in a major city.
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