First look at proposals for new ‘Mackie Mayor’ style food hall in the centre of Prestwich

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The vision for a £100m re-development of the centre of Prestwich includes a new food and market hall and a village square.

Developer Muse and Bury Council have unveiled new computer generated images and an updated masterplan on the future of Prestwich village with a planning application expected.

A previous public consultation conducted by the council’s development partners Muse said that the project should take inspiration from Manchester city centre’s Mackie Mayor, alongside projects in Chorlton, Altrincham and Didsbury, to provide a leisure focussed type of market hall. The latest concept image clearly shows such a development with Muse saying they plan a ‘food hall for local food operators and communal seating that spills out onto the village square’.

The vision for the new-look Prestwich village.The vision for the new-look Prestwich village.
The vision for the new-look Prestwich village.

The project will replace the current Longfield Centre with Bury Council saying they hope to ‘cement Prestwich as one of the best places to live and spendtime in the North West’. The plans include a new community hub building, including a library and community space that can be used for events, clubs and art and culture.

Muse and the council said they were having positive discussions with the NHS and local GP practices about relocating health and GP services within the building. There will be retail and leisure spaces across the site including a new gym.

They said the village square has been flexibly designed so it provides space for pop-up events like markets, food festivals, art exhibitions and live performances. Car parking in the centre of the site will be relocated to a new multi-storey travel hub off Fairfax Road, which will contain around 350 spaces, electric vehicle charging points, cycle storage and parcel lockers.

The proposed travel hub location is designed to help reduce traffic along Rectory Lane and provide more space for pedestrians and cyclists.

The plans also include around 200 new homes. The housing is not yet fully designed but Muse said there will be a mix of apartment sizes for affordable homes, first-time buyers, growing families and downsizers.

Stuart Rogers, project director at Muse, said: “We had a brilliant response to our first conversation on regenerating Prestwich Village with nearly 900 people submitting questionnaires and hundreds of residents attending our online and in-person events.

“The local community is really passionate about the future of the site and shared loads of great ideas and feedback. This has been fundamental in helping us to work up detailed plans for our vision to create a new beating heart for Prestwich that appeals to everyone.

“At Muse, our approach to placemaking is to work closely with local communities and use their knowledge and insight to help us make people-centred places that leave a long-lasting, positive legacy. We’re looking forward to continuing the conversation with residents and hope we get another fantastic response over the coming weeks.”

Coun Eamonn O’Brien, leader of Bury Council, said: “These are truly transformational plans, bringing together housing, leisure, health and business opportunities to the heart of Prestwich. I’m delighted that so many people have already got involved and commented on the proposals. I urge everyone to play their part in ensuring that these developments will make Prestwich thrive for many generations to come.”

The second community conversation closes on Sunday, October 8. There will be drop-in sessions on Saturday, September 16 from 11am – 3pm and Wednesday, September 20, 5pm – 8pm at Prestwich Library, Longfield Centre where a team will be on hand to discuss the masterplan.