Manchester television production base The Space Project is considering expanding – just months after its launch.
In a report going to Manchester City Council’s executive committee next Wednesday, officers say that the expansion could lead to less housing being built at the at the former Fujitsu site in Gorton to make way for it.
“The Space Project has already successfully attracted a BBC television production who will occupy 19,000 sq ft of sound stage space and other negotiations with potential occupiers are ongoing.
The Space Project is now reviewing the potential for future growth and development. Given the employment generating ability of the Space Project it is recommended that Development Plot L – the former Armstrong Pumps site, that has to date been identified as a residential development plot within the current Master Plan, is re-designated as a potential employment site and is reserved as potential expansion land for the Space Project.
“This designation will be reviewed once the Space Project has reached a conclusion on their review of future growth and development at this site.
“The cumulative impact of these amendments will be to reduce the overall number of new houses that can be delivered by approximately 135 units.”
And expansion would seem to be in the minds of those running the facility, as John Mariner, head of production at The Space Project and The Sharp Project told Prolific North back in July.
“… with the arrival of The Space Project, our new 360,000 sq ft production facility which just a few weeks ago opened its doors to its first production – a collaboration with the BBC on a new drama format for CBBC called World’s End – we’re vastly widening our scope and ability to attract major productions from the UK and overseas to our studios.
“……My job is to help get as many people making great TV in Manchester as possible and if they choose to do so at The Space Project, then all the better!”
The former Fujitsu base has cost £10.6m to develop with £6.1m coming from the council, £4m from a European Regional Development Fund grant, and £500,000 from the Homes and Communities Agency.
Read the full document being considered by the council committee here.