Manchester Metropolitan University to get striking 'zig-zag' library building next to Mancunian Way approved

Developers believe it's a ‘landmark development’ that’s ‘fit for the 21st century’.
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It looks like university bosses will get the go-ahead to build a stunning new library next to Mancunian Way next week.

Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) has proposed a striking ‘zig-zag’ library to sit next to the city centre motorway, which bosses hope will be ‘landmark development’ that’s a ‘library fit for the 21st century’. It was unveiled in November.

The plans go before Manchester councillors at the authority’s planning committee on Thursday, February 15 — and have been recommended for approval by its planning department. Should it get the green light, the new All Saints Library will also contain gallery and event spaces, and provide a home for the Manchester Poetry Library — the first of its kind in the north west.

How the All Saints Library will look, as it goes before Manchester's planning committee on Feb 15. Picture: MMUHow the All Saints Library will look, as it goes before Manchester's planning committee on Feb 15. Picture: MMU
How the All Saints Library will look, as it goes before Manchester's planning committee on Feb 15. Picture: MMU

The previous planning meeting was interrupted by activists and suspended in January, who were unhappy with proposals to build student tower blocks in Ardwick and Hulme. One of those blocks was deferred from the committee to allow councillors to do a site visit.

That block, on Plymouth Grove, comes back for the February edition and the recommendation is ‘minded for approval’. The same recommendation has been given to a plan to build 109 affordable homes on brownfield land in Newton Heath, on the corner of Oldham Road and Old Church Street.

It’s also been recommended that the committee refuse two applications. One is a 37-flat retirement complex on the corner of Lapwing Lane and Palatine Road in west Didsbury, as it’s thought to be ‘an overdevelopment of the site’.

The other is a plan to build 112 homes on a former B&M store in Burnage, which council leader Bev Craig objects to. Coun Craig represents the Burnage ward, and along with fellow Labour representatives, says the plan ‘does not best serve the local community’, according to a summary of her objection.

Another application, to convert a probation centre into a 20-bed homeless shelter in Wythenshawe, is recommended for approval — despite 92 objections being received.

Manchester City Council’s planning committee will meet at 2pm on February 15.