Plans have been submitted to Manchester City Council for a 6.5-acre park to be built along the banks of the River Medlock. Mayfield Park will be the first public park in the city centre, and the first built in the Manchester area for over 90 years, since Wythenshawe Park was given to the city in 1926.
The park is designed to be a relaxing nature spot, surrounded by a newly regenerated leisure zone. Situated only five minutes walk from Piccadilly Station, 30 acres around Fairfield Street are set to be completely redeveloped in the proposed £1.4 billion scheme.
Development on Mayfield Park is expected to begin in early 2020, taking up to 15 years. The proposals come as welcome news to many after plans to renovate the unpopular concrete structures in Piccadilly Gardens fell through earlier this year.
Manchester City Council leader Sir Richard Leese said that the Council are “determined to deliver” on the plans. Speaking to the BBC, he added: “These plans have the potential to transform an unloved and largely unused part of the city centre into a world-class gateway area, creating thousands of new jobs and housing to support our growing city.”
The area for the proposed park is close to city centre student accommodation. Emma, a third-year English student at the University of Manchester, who lives close by told The Mancunion: “[More green spaces in Manchester are] important because skyscrapers are depressing. For me, this means another park to explore and more nature on my doorstep.”
Those who have been to Warehouse Project this year will have already seen part of the scheme, as the venue – the 10,000 capacity Depot at Mayfield – was an abandoned train depot before reopening in 2017. When completed, the area is set to “put Mayfield at the heart of Manchester’s cultural life” with 1400 new homes, a hotel, an office building, and retail and leisure space being built in addition to Mayfield Park.