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Bruntwood SciTech to invest £54m in next phase of Circle Square amid surging demand from tech occupiers

News, Manchester City Centre
Circle Square

Bruntwood SciTech has provided a significant boost to Manchester’s burgeoning knowledge economy with a £54m investment at Circle Square, the new neighbourhood being created in the heart of the city’s innovation district.

In response to the increasing demand for workspace from leading science and technology companies looking to invest in Manchester, Bruntwood SciTech - a landmark 50:50 partnership between Bruntwood and Legal & General - is bringing forward the next phase of its commercial plans at Circle Square, with work on a new 220,000 sq ft, 12 storey building beginning, subject to planning approval, in January 2020.

Circle Square’s first two commercial buildings – No.1 and No.2 Circle Square – are currently under construction and have received exceptional levels of interest from high growth businesses from across the UK and internationally. Global technology company Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced in December 2018 it is to bring 300 employees to No.1 Circle Square, in order to capitalise on its collaborative community of leaders in technology, business, arts and science.

Other significant pre-lets are currently under discussion, and with space at the two buildings in significant demand Bruntwood SciTech has accelerated plans for its next commercial building to cater for the anticipated continued growth of Manchester’s digital technology and engineering sector. Research by Tech Nation has illustrated the distance by which Manchester is outstripping its rivals, with tech deals growing at a quicker rate than anywhere else in Europe over the 2012-17 period, up 228% compared to London (189%) and Germany (51%), with the North as a whole seeing a 114% rise.

The new build, 220,000 sq ft No.3 Circle Square will offer leased office space over 12 storeys. The design process is currently underway, led by architects FCBS, who designed No.1 and No.2 Circle Square.

The ground floor will combine a reception area with retail and leisure amenities, while cycle and shower facilities and a rooftop terrace will also be incorporated, giving exceptional views across South Manchester and providing companies at Circle Square a private garden space from which to work.

Located at the heart of Manchester’s Oxford Road Corridor innovation district, Circle Square - a joint venture between Bruntwood SciTech and Vita Group - is a pioneering new neighbourhood that will boast over 1,700 new homes, 1.2 million sq ft of workspace and over 100,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space, providing a variety of boutique retailers, restaurants, bars and pavement cafes, all centered around Manchester’s largest city centre park. The park itself will host a variety of community and cultural events that will celebrate the city’s dynamic and creative community.

Tom Renn, Managing Director, Bruntwood SciTech - Manchester said: “With No.1 & No.2 Circle Square opening in Summer 2020, we are delighted to be in a position, where the level of interest and excitement around what we are creating at Circle Square, has led to us accelerating the development of No.3 Circle Square.”

“Circle Square will be an extraordinary place, full of life and activity. A place where incredible companies, working in some of the most interesting and disruptive digital technology sectors, like Cyber, FinTech, IOT and big data, will work alongside each other and where residents and visitors to Manchester, will come to experience the best of our cities cultural offer, through independent retailers and the programme of festivals and events that we plan to host in Manchester’s newest city park.”

“Critically companies that we are speaking to are really identifying with Circle Square as a top location in the city to access talent, transport and one of the largest tech communities in the North.”

A planning application is set to be submitted in September of this year, with the aim of work on site starting in early 2020 ahead of completion in April 2022.

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