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iQ awarded planning consent for Manchester co-living scheme

iQ Student Accommodation secures planning consent for Manchester’s first co-living scheme

An innovative living solution for undergraduates, graduates and urban professionals wanting to live in the heart of the city

iQ Student Accommodation (iQ), one of the UK's leading providers of city centre accommodation designed specifically for young people is pleased to announce that Manchester City Council has awarded iQ planning consent for Echo Street, a pioneering mixed-use development consisting of Co-Living accommodation and Purpose Built Student Accommodation in the heart of Manchester City Centre.

The development – with unparalleled proximity to the city centre and access to transport links - will consist of 403 units of Co-Living accommodation and 94 units of Purpose Built Student Accommodation, alongside significant improvements to the surrounding public realm. Residents will benefit from fully furnished apartments, shared living, best in class amenity spaces, all-inclusive rents as well as 24/7 security and management.  Shared spaces include collaborative work spaces, lounges, a library, gym and rooftop terrace and sky lounge, reflecting a truly social way of living.

Co-Living is a new concept in residential development in the UK. It is a way of living that is centred on creating community and social living, designed to provide a vibrant work / life hub for residents.  The scheme will be the first to bring co-living to Manchester, but is already well established in North America, and is a growing housing trend in London and other major European cities.

Rob Roger, Chief Executive of iQ said,There is a clear need for affordable and high quality accommodation aimed at young people who are taking their first steps in their career; and we believe that Echo Street provides just this. Echo Street provides flexible accommodation within an environment that encourages community, through well thought out collaborative social and working spaces – not too dissimilar to the benefits experienced as a student at University.

It is against this backdrop that we are delighted to receive planning consent for this landmark scheme, which will be a striking addition to a gateway location in the city centre. We believe developments like Echo Street will help to retain and attract recent graduates and urban professionals to Manchester, further supporting the major growth that this vibrant city is experiencing.”

In November 2017, iQ submitted a planning application for Echo Street, following an extensive public pre-application consultation process where feedback was taken on the overall design of the building. The project includes strategic regeneration of the area, including improving the area around much loved Vimto Park. The building has been designed by award winning architects Sheppard Robson, who have also designed Manchester landmarks such as the Manchester Metropolitan University’s Brooks Building and 1 The Avenue in Spinningfields.

The development will replace the existing Chandos House, which is currently owned and operated by IQ for student accommodation purposes. Located in the former North Campus area, the development is close to Piccadilly Station and services within Manchester City Centre. The area is set to undergo a major transformation over the coming years, with Manchester City Council recently endorsing the North Campus Strategic Regeneration Framework, which the Echo Street development sits just outside. It is also adjacent to the proposed HS2 station and emerging Mayfair district.

The team led by iQ includes Capita, Turley, Cundall, Ramboll, Curtins, Vectos and Planit IE.