Is Manchester Britain’s Manhattan?

City centre living, made popular by and virtually invented in New York, is currently soaring in Manchester.

The number of 20 to 30-somethings moving into Manchester has boomed over the last 10 years with over 123,000 living in the city compared to only 78,000 ten years ago. The other parallels between Manchester and New York include the fact that it is a very compact city with everything in close proximity and reasonable walking distance, including work, restaurants, bars and shops.

The comparison between Manchester and Manhattan may be stretching it a bit, especially when it comes to the scale and size of the buildings but having said that, there are certainly lifestyle similarities between the two locations. The plethora of new trendy bars and restaurants and the diversity of their offering do mirror what New York has to offer.

There has also been a spate of New York-style Sunday brunch clubs opening in Manchester with décor and interior design styles very reminiscent of Manhattan eateries and bars with dark wood floors and industrial bare brick walls.

New property developments

Interestingly there has also been a soar in demand for New York-style loft apartments in Manchester in areas such as Deansgate, Ancoats, Salford Quays and the Northern Quarter. Warehouse and mill conversions have been particularly popular with young professional buyers who are looking for contemporary living in the heart of the city.

High rise developments with 24-hour concierge services and fantastic views of the city such as The Edge, Spectrum, Leftbank, No 1 Deansgate Century Buildings and the soon to be launched Oxygen Tower are making their mark on the city and are springing up to meet the burgeoning demand.

According to market analysts there are 18% more apartments in the centre of Manchester since the end of the recession. The skyline of Manchester is increasingly becoming a sea of cranes as more apartments, offices and prime city centre developments shoot up across the city.

Forward-thinking and innovative

In addition to all the clubs, bars and restaurants, there are also plans for a raised walkway or ‘park in the air’ which will be lined with flowers, trees and seating areas. This is planned for the disused Castlefield Viaduct in the city centre and, if it goes ahead, will be evocative of the very successful Manhattan High Line which are gardens planted on old raised railway track creating an aerial greenway, and becoming the second most visited cultural venue in the city, attracting nearly five million visitors every year.

Manchester is evolving to be one of the most forward-thinking and innovative cities in the UK and this is reflected in the exciting array of property developments that are changing the city’s skyline.

12 April 2016
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