Stockport Exchange Phase 2
The overall scheme has been master planned to create a thriving commercial business district, set around new public space and amenities including a hotel, cafés, restaurants and leisure centre.
Phase 2 of the development comprises a hotel, an office building and a new public square together with associated highways works in connection with access to Stockport Station. The five storey office building comprises 61,667 sq ft Category A accommodation delivered to BREEAM Excellent with Retail on the Ground Floor, and Offices on the Upper Floors.
It is envisaged that through high quality architecture and the creative use of the site the building will achieve prominence and be of outstanding character.
The Hotel comprises a six storey (lower ground, ground, plus five upper floors) building providing 115 full turnkey bedroom facilities for the operator.
The Public Realm works consist of three main components. These are the central pedestrianized plaza, the southern turning loop incorporating Railway Road, and the northern turning loop incorporating Station Road.
The public realm works are a vitally important role in the success of this regeneration project and will remain an important foyer space for the general public using the station.
One of the key challenges on this project was the multiple stakeholders involved and ensuring we met the needs and requirements of everyone involved.
Regular communication with stakeholders has included;
- Hosting of monthly tenant meetings to allow exchange of information and address any concerns of the local businesses
- Attendance at user group forums (eg. The Cycle User Group or meeting the taxi drivers via SODA)
- Working in partnership with Virgin and NCP to ensure that access is maintained at all times for station customers
- Close liaison with the local bus company
- Regular attendance at Stockport Disability Access Forum
- An open door policy established with local businesses and stakeholders
- Fortnightly walk-arounds with neighbour groups and an open day has been held
Further key challenges included changing the road structure and the large service diversions required. Planning and phasing has been imperative on this scheme to overcome these logistical challenges and ensure the minimum of disruption to existing businesses and residents.
The sites location in the centre of Stockport, adjacent to an existing operational railway station also creates potential complications.
We have created a temporary lay-by for children’s’ drop-off for the swimming pool and has also provided a taxi lay-by for commuters to overcome these challenges. Site staff also hand information out to passengers at the train station and distribute a feedback questionnaire, making an effort to be as helpful as possible, including helping with baggage.
The site has arranged food bank collections throughout the project duration and have also taken part in a 10k fun run for charity.
A Skills Company representative comes to site once a week to assist in the site’s promotion of apprenticeships and college student party visits are facilitated.
Students from local colleges have been given safety presentations and presentations have also been given at two local schools.