Taxpayers foot ┬ú15m cash injection for recession-hit Spinningfields office scheme
Manchester Council is planning to use up to ┬ú15milion of taxpayers’ funds in a bid to boost the high-profile city centre Spinningfields development, which has been hampered by the recession.
The Council are now expected to face tough questions, as the move comes just days after the announcement that they would be cutting 300 jobs a year as part of a programme to save ┬ú37million by 2013.
The plan to boost Manchester’s Spinningfields scheme – billed as the ‘Canary Wharf of the North’ – will see the Council buy up two remaining office plots and then lease them back to Spinningfield’s owners, Allied London. The plan should bring up to 580,000 sq ft of prime office space to the area, and the Council expects to recoup its cash injection through the rental agreement.
The ‘masterplan’, which includes apartments, retail and office space, is also expected to help Manchester meet demand for office space this year as the UK edges away from recession.
According to Manchester Evening News, Manchester council’s chief executive, Sir Howard Bernstein, said:
“This is a prudent investment. We think it’s very important that if we’re going to be able to maintain growth and respond to the demands for office space in the city centre over the next few years that we create the best possible platform.”
The final completion date has been moved from 2014 to 2015.