The Factory (Manchester)

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The Factory

Granada Studio Tours, Manchester, 2011.jpg

Former Granada Studios entrance on Water Street, proposed site of venue
Location Former Granada TV Studios
Water Street
Manchester
M60 9EA England
Coordinates 53°28′40.1844″N02°15′27.2988″W / 53.477829000°N 2.257583000°W / 53.477829000; -2.257583000 Coordinates: 53°28′40.1844″N02°15′27.2988″W / 53.477829000°N 2.257583000°W / 53.477829000; -2.257583000
Public transit Deansgate train station
Owner Manchester Quays Ltd (MQL)
Operator Manchester International Festival
via the project's board
Capacity 6,500
1,500 theatre space
5,000 flexible 'warehouse' space
Acreage 13,500 square meters
Construction
Broke ground 8 July 2017 (2017-07-08)
Opened September 2020 (2020-09)planned
Construction cost £116.5 million
Architect Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), lead designer Rem Koolhaas
Project manager Jenny Baxter
Structural engineer BuroHappold Engineering also civil engineer services and building services
Services engineer Charcoalblue (theatre)
Ove Arup & Partners (acoustic)
General contractor Laing O'Rourke
Main contractors Allied London
Tenants
Manchester International Festival
on a peppercorn rent of 30 years
Website
mif.co.uk/thefactory/

The Factory is a £110 million theatre and arts venue to be built on the former site of Granada Studios, in the St John's Quarter of Manchester (currently the site of the Starlight Theatre), [1] being developed by Manchester Quays Ltd (MQL), a development partnership between Allied London and Manchester City Council, [2] and is to be the permanent home of the Manchester International Festival. [3] Its name comes from Factory Records, the independent record label founded by Tony Wilson. [4] [5]

Granada Studios Television studio complex in Manchester, England

Granada Studios were television studios on Quay Street in Manchester with the facility to broadcast live and recorded programmes. They were the headquarters of Granada Television and later ITV Granada between 1956 and 2013. At the time of their closure, the studios were the oldest operating purpose-built television studios in the United Kingdom.

Manchester City and metropolitan borough in England

Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England, with a population of 545,500 as of 2017. It lies within the United Kingdom's third-most populous metropolitan area, with a population of 3.2 million. It is fringed by the Cheshire Plain to the south, the Pennines to the north and east, and an arc of towns with which it forms a continuous conurbation. The local authority is Manchester City Council.

Allied London is a property development and investment company that develops landmark projects ranging from re-use to regeneration developments across retail, commercial, office, residential, restaurant, and leisure sectors. The company also offers rental options. They own several buildings in the Spinningfields area of Manchester, as well as Glasgow, Leeds and London.

Contents

Background

The development was announced in 2014. [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] Initially the Chancellor, George Osborne, announced that the venue would cost £78 million, [13] subsequently the council stated that they had managed to secure a further £32 million from "a variety of sources" but added that no public money would be used. [14] The council said that the venue would "play an integral part in helping Manchester and the north of England provide a genuine cultural counterbalance to London". [13] The government confirmed the £78 million towards the £110 million in November 2015. They also announced that, from 1 April 2018, they will provide Arts Council England (ACE) with an additional £9 million per annum to offer revenue support to Factory. [15] :9

George Osborne British politician (b. 1971)

George Gideon Oliver Osborne is a British Conservative Party politician, who was Member of Parliament (MP) for Tatton from June 2001 until he stood down on 3 May 2017. He served as Chancellor of the Exchequer under Prime Minister David Cameron from 2010 to 2016. He has been editor of the London Evening Standard since May 2017 and chair of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership (NPP) since September 2016.

Arts Council England arts organization in London, England

Arts Council England is a non-departmental public body of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. It was formed in 1994 when the Arts Council of Great Britain was divided into three separate bodies for England, Scotland and Wales. The arts funding system in England underwent considerable reorganisation in 2002 when all of the regional arts boards were subsumed into Arts Council England and became regional offices of the national organisation.

In July 2016, the council gave further details about the sources of the £110 million capital cost of the building: [15] :13-14 The following year, July 2017, the council announced changes to the design of the building would mean a larger orchestra pit, alterations to the facades and the capacity of the smaller venue reduced from 1,700 to 1,500. The revised designs will mean an increase in the overall cost to £111.65 million, £1.6 million to come from council borrowing and £50,000 from the Treasury. [16] [17]

HM Treasury United Kingdom government department

Her Majesty's Treasury, sometimes referred to as the Exchequer, or more informally the Treasury, is the British government department responsible for developing and executing the government's public finance policy and economic policy. The Treasury maintains the Online System for Central Accounting and Reporting (OSCAR), the replacement for the Combined Online Information System (COINS), which itemises departmental spending under thousands of category headings, and from which the Whole of Government Accounts (WGA) annual financial statements are produced.

Funding for the building of The Factory [15] :13-14 [16]
Source of fundingAmount £m ( % of all funding )
Exchequer via ACE grant
78(69.9%)
Manchester City Council
21.6(19.3%)
ACE Lottery grant
7(6.3%)
Fundraising by MIF
5(4.5%)
Exchequer grant
0.05(0.05%)

Total amount = £111.65m

The council also announced that an application for a new charity, The Factory Trust, to be chaired by Sir Howard Bernstein has been made to the Charities Commission. The council state that, "once the trust has charitable status, it will begin a programme of applications to Trusts and Foundations alongside approaches to individuals and corporations." [16] :7

Howard Bernstein

Sir Howard Bernstein was the Chief executive of Manchester City Council at Manchester Town Hall from 1998 to 2017. Originally joining the Council as a junior clerk, he became the Chief executive in 1998, responsible for setting development goals and encouraging investment in the city. He is Honorary Professor of Politics at The University of Manchester.

The Charity Commission for England and Wales is the non-ministerial government department that regulates registered charities in England and Wales and maintains the Central Register of Charities.

Overview

The entire space will cover 13,500 square metres and will be flexible enough to accommodate combined audiences of up to 6,500, although it is envisaged that it will operate mainly as a 1,500 seat theatre space plus a 5,000 capacity flexible performance space (the warehouse). [16] The scheme also includes the restoration and reuse of the northern brick arched portion of the Grade II-listed Colonnaded Railway Viaduct [18] and a public realm to the north and west of the Factory building. [19] [20]

Plans for the Factory will also align with the adjacent Museum of Science and Industry, which "will become part of the creative public realm, with MSI's creative science ... balancing the creative and cultural production of Factory." [15] :11 The MSI plan to build a new £6 million Special Exhibition Gallery alongside the Factory; the new gallery is set to be complete by 2018. [21] [22]

Project board structure

In the summer of 2015, it was announced that the design and development process would be overseen by a Project Board set up by Manchester City Council with Maria Balshaw appointed the Single Responsible Owner for the project. Funding and project monitoring is the responsibility of ACE, who have agreed to second Simon Mellor, ACE's Executive Director, Arts and Culture, [23] for up to two days a week (to be based in the Manchester project office in Manchester Town Hall). His role will be to support the further development of the business case and to work up the technical brief for the design team. [24] Mellor was previously a General Director at MIF. [25] Other contacts for the project include: Joanne Roney (the council's Chief Executive), Dave Carty (development manager of the council's City Centre Regeneration) and Pat Bartoli (head of the council's City Centre Regeneration Team). [15] :4

In June 2016, it was announced that the chief operating officer for BBC England, Jenny Baxter, was to become project director of The Factory from autumn 2016, at a salary of £140,000 to be paid by Manchester City Council. [26] [27]

Manchester City Council granted planning permission for the building in January 2017, announcing at the same time that Manchester International Festival will operate the centre, with Mark Ball, the current artistic director of the London International Festival of Theatre (LIFT), joining MIF in June 2017 as Associate Artistic Director to oversee the creation of The Factory. [28] [29]

In July 2017 several new board members were announced (along with chair, Howard Bernstein):

Further additions to the board were announced in September the same year:

Design team appointments

The £9.5m design contracts were put out to tender in July 2015. [31] The design team are being procured through the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) procurement process via seven lots, each with an estimated duration of 45 months (3 years, 9 months i.e. the summer of 2019) from the award of the contract in mid-November 2015:

Successful bidder: (see " Architectural design team " below) [33]
Successful bidder: Charcoalblue [33]
Successful bidder: Buro Happold [33] [34]
The five shortlisted firms: Buro Happold [33] [34]
Successful bidder: Gardiner and Theobald [33]
Successful bidder: WSP UK (Trading as WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff) [33]
Successful bidder: Ove Arup & Partners [33]

Architectural design team

Rem Koolhaas of OMA pictured in 1987. Rem Koolhaas 1987.jpg
Rem Koolhaas of OMA pictured in 1987.

On 23 September 2015, the Architects' Journal announced the shortlisted design teams, [35] however the former president of the Royal Institute of British Architects, Angela Brady, was amongst a number of architects who expressed their concern that there are no architects amongst the jury that would name the successful bidding firm. The jury comprised: Richard Leese, (leader of Manchester City Council), Tom Bloxham, (chairman of the festival and Urban Splash), and Michael Ingall, (chief executive of Allied London). The jury were assisted by a technical panel: Maria Balshaw, (director of the Whitworth, University of Manchester and Manchester City Galleries - comprising Manchester Art Gallery and Gallery of Costume), Pat Bartoli, (head of the council's City Centre Regeneration Team), John McGrath, (artistic director and chief executive of the festival), Greg Attwood, (development director at Allied London), and Dave Carty, (development manager of the council's City Centre Regeneration). [36]

Out of the 48 architectural firms who expressed an interest, the following nine were invited to go forward by the council:

Rafael Viñoly Architects · Diller Scofidio + Renfro · Bennetts Associates · Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) · Zaha Hadid Architects · SimpsonHaugh and Partners · Grimshaw Architects · Mecanoo International · Haworth Tompkins Limited

The successful company chosen by the council was Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) with its lead designer Rem Koolhaas. [33] [37] [38]

Timescale

The timeframe established by the Project Board contained the following key milestones: Note 1

When the procurement process was completed, a detailed design and delivery strategy as well as a detailed business case was presented to Manchester City Council's Executive Committee. [15]

The planning application was submitted to the council in November 2016, [40] and approved in January 2017. [41]

Revised timetable

A revised planning application, taking account of some design changes, is due to be submitted in September 2017 with a decision expected in November 2017. This will result in the venue opening in September 2020, with test events from April / May 2020, [16] rather than the original plan of the opening ceremony at the beginning of 2020. [39]

Training and employment

It is intended that the Factory should deliver a skills, engagement and training programme that is divided into two elements:

  1. Factory Plant, which build's on the festivals existing learning programme [15] :10 and,
  2. Factory Academy, "a new, virtual academy and centre for excellence in training the next generation of technicians, producers and creatives for the performing arts and live events industries across the Northern Powerhouse." [15] :11

It is also anticipated that the venue will have 125 permanent staff plus 15 apprentices. [15] :12–13 Funding will come from the Factory Trust which is due to be established for the purposes of fundraising. [42]

See also

Further reading

Related Research Articles

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References

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Notes

Note 1 The original timeline was as follows:
  • May 2016 - planning application submission
  • January 2017 to December 2018 - construction
  • January 2019 to June 2019 - commissioning of facilities and test events
  • July 2019 - opening ceremony
Note 2 The revised timeline was as follows:
  • End of 2019 - opening ceremony
Reference to Note 1
Reference to Note 2