1. The Manchester Metropolitan University has its origins in the creation of Manchester
Polytechnic in 1970 by the merger of three existing colleges. Further mergers with
institutions in Manchester and Cheshire continued over a period of more than twenty
years, Crewe+Alsager College joining as a faculty in 1992 when university status was
granted. The University is now located on seven major sites, of which five are in central
and south Manchester and two respectively at Crewe and Alsager. In addition, there are
some detached halls of residence and sports facilities.
2. The main purpose of the Estate Strategy is to support the University's academic
activities; both directly, in creating a supportive physical environment, and indirectly, in
minimising premises-related costs in order to release more resources for academic
purposes. In achieving this, the aim is to provide well-equipped accommodation
which is sufficient in quantity and uniformly high in quality. It needs to:
1. provide an attractive and accessible environment for students and staff;
2. be able to facilitate a wide range of possible academic developments, including a
growing demand for space to house research staff;
3. be flexible in order to adapt to future changes in educational requirements;
4. be economical to run.
3. The existing pattern of provision creates problems in achieving the above requirements.
Many of the buildings are unable to meet current demands without major expenditure.
Furthermore, the existence of seven separate campuses places constraints upon potential
academic developments and co-operation, and builds in a significant measure of
expensive duplication of services, inefficiency in the use of resources, and inconvenience
for students and staff.
4. This has led to the decision to concentrate the University on a smaller number of sites;
ultimately, perhaps only one or two in Manchester and one in South Cheshire. There are
three key questions which had to be addressed concerning the principle of concentrating
on a smaller number of sites:
1. Is it desirable?
2. Is it physically possible to implement the required building programme?
3. Is it affordable?
5. It is clear that significant benefits could result from a greater concentration of academic
activities on a smaller number of sites. These could include:
1. Far more flexibility in the organisation and integration of academic activities,
particularly in facilitating greater co-operation between subject disciplines in
research activities, in devising and delivering new patterns of courses and in
achieving common standards of quality control.
2. Meeting student needs for convenient access to high-quality learning, teaching,
support, social and recreational facilities.
3. Providing attractive, efficient, flexible and well-equipped new buildings fit for their
purpose, suited to modern needs and designed to maximise flexibility in future use.
4. Ensuring economic use of teaching time and of teaching and support space.
5. Achieving savings in running costs to the benefit of academic and support activities.
6. Avoiding the substantial long-term expenditure involved in updating and sustaining
the current pattern of sites and buildings.
7. Facilitating the provision of good quality residential accommodation close to the
8. Enhancing the corporate identity and external image of the University.
6. The proposals for concentration need to be phased in over a period of time. This 10-year
strategy is necessary for financial reasons, as income from the sale of surplus property
will be required to fund later stages of building. It is also desirable, in the light of
uncertainty over future developments in higher education, to ensure that each phase
forms a viable and self-contained project in case, for any reason, it is decided not to
proceed with further phases.
7. A Master Planning exercise on the All Saints Campus, supported by detailed financial
analyses, has shown that it is both possible and affordable to achieve a significant
measure of concentration. An initial financial assessment, based on estimates of
building costs, income from the sale of surplus properties and the resulting capital
borrowing requirement, indicates that the relocation of activities on Aytoun and Hollings
campuses is achievable within the first few years of the Strategy (see Section 7 of the
Strategy). It is accordingly proposed to initiate detailed planning of the work required to
achieve these moves.
8. The relocation of activities from the Elizabeth Gaskell and Didsbury Campuses to All
Saints will need to be considered later as circumstances and finances permit, which will
almost certainly put such moves beyond the timescale of this Strategy. It is therefore not
proposed to pursue these options at the present time.
9. The University is committed to remaining in South Cheshire and to developing its
operation there. It has been decided that MMU Cheshire should concentrate on a single
site at Crewe as this has significant potential to benefit the development of the Faculty.
Detailed, costed plans for the physical development of the Campus are still in
preparation. However, the possibility of commencing the transfer of academic activities
in 2005/6 is being actively explored.
10. This document has been prepared following an extensive consultation exercise,
involving external bodies as well as the University, about the principle of concentrating
on fewer sites. The results of the consultation revealed general support for
concentration, and the issues raised have been taken into account in preparing this Estate
11. Much progress has already been made towards delivering this Strategy. In Manchester,
the All Saints West building has enabled the relocation of the School of Law to All
Saints, a major remodelling project for the Faculty of Science & Engineering is
underway and agreements have been reached to provide sufficient residential
accommodation for first year students, convenient for the All Saints Campus. In Crewe,
new halls are being constructed and agreement for the development of the Alsager
Campus for alternative uses has been secured.
12. The Strategy is evolutionary and dynamic, so the details of its implementation will be
subject to adjustment as circumstances change. Indeed, this has already happened, in that
due to developments in health sector education the envisaged early move from Elizabeth
Gaskell has been deferred. The next moves will therefore be from Aytoun and Hollings:
the Business School wishes to relocate from Aytoun to All Saints as soon as possible,
while the relatively small size and high running costs associated with the Hollings
Campus, and the possibility of creating closer links with allied subject areas, provide
strong motives for an early transfer.
13. This 2004 Revision of the 2001-2010 Strategy is intended to bring it up to date. A
further revision will be required next year once the plans and costs of concentrating
MMU Cheshire at Crewe have been prepared and evaluated. To facilitate future
adjustments, this document will be supplemented by the University's Corporate Planning
Statement, which is revised annually.
1: INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
1.1.1 The purpose of the University's Estate Strategy is to identify the future direction of the
development of the physical facilities required to support the University's Strategic Plan.
The University Estate Strategy of January 1995 was prepared in accordance with the
requirements of the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). It built
upon earlier accommodation strategies developed separately by the Polytechnic and
Crewe+Alsager College. Between them, these strategies outlined a series of measures,
principally concerned with:
1. Adaptations to make the most efficient use of the premises, including work needed
to facilitate the reallocation of some departments to different sites.
2. The provision of additional teaching accommodation, primarily on the All Saints
and Aytoun Campuses.
3. A programme of major improvements to all of the University's libraries, including
new buildings at Aytoun and Hollings.
4. A general programme of extending, improving and upgrading accommodation,
particularly specialist facilities.
5. Improvements to the environment and to car parking, principally at All Saints.
6. The purchase of key properties, specifically the St Augustine's School and Tylecote
sites at All Saints and the Minshull building at Aytoun.
7. The provision of a further 2,000 residential places (1,800 in Manchester and 200 at
8. The disposal of surplus properties, mainly individual buildings detached from the
1.1.2 Almost all of the projects associated with the 1995 Strategy were completed. The major
1. Enhanced teaching accommodation for the Faculty of Science & Engineering.
2. The purchase of the former St Augustine's School site at All Saints.
3. Only about half of the additional 2,000 residential places have been provided (but
see section 6.2.4 concerning the private sector).
1.1.3 During 2000-2001, work took place to develop a new Estate Strategy, to run from 2001
to 2010. After extensive consultation, this Strategy was approved by the Board of
Governors in July 2001. Since then, some parts of it have been delivered, while other
plans (particularly the order of transfer of sites in Manchester) have been revised. No
change in direction of the Strategy is therefore planned at this stage; this 2004 Revision
is intended only to bring the 2001 Strategy up to date.
1.1.4 It is in the nature of long-term planning that circumstances change, so plans have to be
flexible enough to accommodate this. This Strategy is intended to achieve this on two
levels: first, by ensuring that implementation of the chosen Strategy is implemented in
self-contained stages, with a pause after the completion of each stage to evaluate whether
it is still appropriate to continue to the next stage; and secondly, by designing all new
and remodelled buildings to incorporate the maximum flexibility in use, so that they can
easily be adapted to other purposes.
1.2 University overview
1.2.1 The University has only been in existence since 1992. However, the history of the
tributary institutions which converged to form first Manchester Polytechnic, in 1970, and
then the University, goes back into the nineteenth century. As a result of mergers taking
place in 1970, 1977, 1983 and 1992 the University now occupies seven major teaching
1.2.2 In 2003/2004 there were 33,000 students, of whom 23,750 were studying full time.
1,055 were from other EU countries and 1250 from overseas. 6,800 of the students were
studying for higher degrees. Academic courses are grouped into seven faculties offering
a very wide range of courses: Art & Design; the MMU Business School; Science &
Engineering; Community Studies & Education; Humanities, Law & Social Science;
Food, Clothing and Hospitality Management; and MMU Cheshire (with a mixture of
disciplines including education, humanities and applied social studies, arts, crafts,
environmental and leisure studies and exercise and sport science). The University has
achieved excellent or very good ratings in teaching quality assessments.
1.2.3 The University has a growing reputation in research, and is one of the leading new
universities attracting research money from external sources and from the Funding
Council. Much of the activity has an applied bias, with particular successes being
achieved in sport and exercise science, materials science, environmental science and
1.2.4 As a result of the 1995 Estate Strategy, there are now five major academic sites in central
and south Manchester and two in Crewe and Alsager. In addition, there are some
outlying sporting facilities and halls of residence. Faculties are arranged to be
coterminous with sites as far as possible. Three of the faculties (Art & Design,
Humanities, Law & Social Science, Science & Engineering) are on the main All Saints
Campus just to the south of Manchester city centre. MMU Business School occupies the
Aytoun Campus in the city centre, the Food, Clothing and Hospitality Management
Faculty occupies the Hollings Campus in south Manchester, and the remaining two
faculties are spread across two sites; Community Studies & Education occupies the
Elizabeth Gaskell and Didsbury Campuses and MMU Cheshire's sites are based in
Crewe and Alsager, some seven miles apart and forty miles from Manchester.
1.3 Estate Strategy structure
1.3.1 This Strategy is based upon an analysis of the accommodation requirements for teaching
and learning, research, and support facilities, in comparison with the existing estate. It is
structured as follows:
1. The University's strategic objectives within the 2003-2010 Strategic Plan;
2. A description and assessment of the existing estate;
3. A comparison between the existing estate and the accommodation needs;
4. An assessment of the University's future requirements;
5. An analysis of the problems, opportunities and options;
6. An evaluation of the options, leading to the selection of the preferred option;
In addition, a plan for implementing and financing the proposal will be contained in a
separate Operating Statement, to be reviewed annually.
2: STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES
2.1 The primary objective of the Estate Strategy is the provision of sufficient and appropriate
space for the needs of the University, as defined in the University's Strategic Plan. One
of the University's core strategies and policies concerns the Estate Strategy:
"To develop and deliver a detailed Estate Strategy for accommodating learning &
teaching, research, the social and recreational environment and residential
accommodation which makes appropriate provision for all students;"
2.2 Specific estates objectives which build on this policy are:
1. To provide on each of the University's teaching sites appropriate and well maintained
accommodation for: teaching and research; library, computing and other educational
support activities; social and refectory facilities; staff and administrative purposes.
2. To ensure the provision of sufficient residential accommodation to meet the
University's projected future needs.
3. To provide access to appropriate sporting facilities to meet the recreational and
competitive needs of the University's students.
4. To ensure a safe, attractive and sustainable environment on all of the University's
5. To work in co-operation with neighbouring institutions and other organisations in
providing appropriate facilities wherever it is advantageous to do so.
6. To achieve all of the above efficiently, in economical, adaptable and accessible
buildings fit for their purpose, in order to minimise University's premises-related
2.3 In order to convert the above general aims into a specific Estate Strategy, close co-
ordination with the University Strategic Plan has taken place.
2.4 For strategic planning purposes, it has generally been assumed that levels of academic
accommodation similar to that existing would be required in the future. However, if any
major building projects were to result from this Strategy, detailed planning would take
place to ensure that efficient use of space was being made, in the light of learning and
2.5 Even where the total space available is adequate, it is necessary to review its fitness for
purpose in meeting current academic needs, in respect of room capacities, the type of
accommodation provided, its accessibility to students and staff with physical disabilities
and specific facilities, for example to support research or to facilitate open and distance
2.6 In addition to the overall academic space needs indicated above there are specific
requirements relating to the provision of residential places, social and recreational
facilities and environmental issues which will be identified in Section 5.
2.7 The implications for the University's accommodation of the planned future growth in the
numbers of people with Higher Education qualifications are currently unclear. Sufficient
flexibility will therefore be allowed in the Strategy to respond to changing
3: THE EXISTING ESTATE
3.1 With the exception of the All Saints Campus, which contains three faculties, each of the
seven major sites of the Metropolitan University is associated with a particular faculty
which has responsibility for organising the use of accommodation and for its day-to-day
3.2 ALL SAINTS (INCLUDING JOHN DALTON)
3.2.1 This is the University's main campus which contains nearly half of the total area of the
University's Manchester sites, as well as much of the central overhead space. There is a
total of 9.6ha of land and 118,100m2 of gross floorspace (98,100m2 net). Its location
close to the city centre, the Victoria University and UMIST (to be combined in the
University of Manchester in 2004) contributes to making this the most valuable of the
sites for the University's operations. The buildings vary considerably in age, from the
1830s to the 2000s, with the majority built in the 1960s and 1970s. Most were originally
purpose-designed or have been adapted at some time (the exception being the former St
Augustine's Primary School, which is currently held on lease) but some are now less
than ideal for their purpose. The Bellhouse, Grosvenor, Righton and Ormond Buildings,
the frontage of the former Chorlton Town Hall and the John Dalton statue are all Grade
3.2.2 The Campus is divided by the high-level Mancunian Way (A57M) with the Faculty of
Science and Engineering housed in the John Dalton buildings, mainly constructed
between the 1960s and 1970s, to the north of the Mancunian Way. To the south of the
Way, around Grosvenor Square, are the Faculties of Art & Design and Humanities &
Social Science, as well as the main administrative centre, 1,000 residential places and the
library serving the total of 13,800 students from all three faculties. All Saints Park, in
the centre of Grosvenor Square, is held by the University on a long-term lease from
Manchester City Council, and is a major visual and recreational asset to the Campus.
Across the Oxford Road are the Students' Union, the Sugden Sports Centre (a joint
project with UMIST) and the new Manchester Aquatics Centre (a Sport England funded
joint project with the City Council, UMIST and the Victoria University). The Dryden
Street Nursery, close to the Campus, is owned by a Partnership set up by the University
and the Victoria University. Within a few minutes walk of the Campus is an increasing
number of privately-owned student residences, with over 3,000 places built or under
3.2.3 Major works completed during the period of the 1995 Strategy include the Geoffrey
Manton Building, Cambridge Halls of Residence, the refurbishment of accommodation
for the Faculty of Art & Design, and a major extension and remodelling of the library,
involving most of the All Saints Building. There is significant scope for further new
construction and for enhancing the accommodation by the replacement of inefficient
buildings. There is also the possibility of utilising adjacent sites and properties if
available. The former All Saints Sports Centre became redundant following the
completion of the Sugden Sports Centre and has been replaced by the new All Saints
West Building for the School of Law. Phases 1 and 2 of a Master Plan for the John
Dalton buildings are being implemented in 2003-2004. A Master Plan for the Campus
has identified the site of the existing Loxford Building as the preferred location for the
next major building project, required (in conjunction with adaptation works elsewhere on
the Campus) to enable the transfer of activities from Aytoun and Hollings. Additional
phases of environmental improvement are planned.
Although there is far less teaching accommodation than at All Saints, this is the largest
site of the University, with substantial residential places and playing fields on 22.5ha.
The original buildings date from the 1940s but most were constructed in the 1960s.
Gross building area is 21,600m2 (19,200m2 net). It houses a part of the MMU Cheshire
Faculty, consisting of the Departments of Contemporary Arts, Humanities & Applied
Social Studies and Exercise & Sports Science, a total of 2,000 students. Recent projects
have included the enclosure of the swimming pool, new facilities for Sports Science, a
remodelling of the library, a floodlit all-weather pitch, a new sports hall and new dance
and drama studios. The location of the site is not particularly convenient, on the edge of
a small town with few facilities for students and access via minor and mainly residential
3.4.1 This is the most constricted campus with limited scope for expansion and poor parking
facilities. It has an area of 0.9ha and 25,100m2 of gross floorspace (16,400m2 net). Most
of the buildings were purpose-built for college use in the 1960s, with the exception of
the 1994 extension and the 19th Century Minshull and Minto & Turner Buildings (the
19th Century buildings both being Grade II listed). The latter is in very poor condition
and is so far unused. The triangular site is bounded by Chorlton Street, Aytoun Street
and the Rochdale Canal, and further environmental and security improvements are
3.4.2 The campus is the base of the MMU Business School, which has a total of 5,000
students. It is located in a part of the city centre which is currently commencing a
programme of considerable redevelopment.
The accommodation at Crewe is smaller than at Alsager, with a total of 13,700m2 gross
(11,100m2 net), but has a larger population of 3,200 students. On the other hand, there is
(in common with the Alsager site) sufficient residential accommodation for all first year
students, two football pitches and substantial grounds totalling 15ha offering
considerable scope for redevelopment. The original buildings date from the turn of the
century (the Delaney Building being Grade II listed) but most were designed in the
1960s. The library was doubled in size by internal adaptation a few years ago and some
new teaching accommodation constructed. The campus houses the headquarters of the
MMU Cheshire Faculty, a part of the Institute of Education and the Departments of
Business & Management Studies and of Environmental & Leisure Studies. It has
excellent communications, close to the railway station, adjacent to a business park and
with access directly from a main road. The site has been selected for the future
development of the Faculty, with activities being transferred from Alsager over a period
likely to extend beyond the timeframe of the current Strategy.
This campus has the second largest building area of the Manchester sites, at 22,000m2
gross (17,000m2 net) and also has room for expansion. The total site area is 4.5ha. Most
of the buildings on the site were purpose-built in the 1960s and 1970s, but the 18th
Century original building and the 19th Century lodge and former Students' Union
building are all Grade II listed. The campus, which is in the St James' conservation area,
also includes a sports centre with a sports hall, gymnasium, fitness suite and tennis
courts. The campus is the main site of the Faculty of Community Studies & Education,
and houses the Manchester part of the Institute of Education and the Department of
Applied Community Studies. It accommodates a total of 3,800 students. Few changes
have taken place to the buildings in recent years, although the library was substantially
remodelled in 2000, and the sports facilities in 2003/4.
3.7 ELIZABETH GASKELL
At 13,100m2 of gross area (9,500m2 net) this campus is small in building terms but has a
relatively large site of 2.2ha. However, scope for further development is limited by part
of the site being within a conservation area. There is a wide variety of building types,
from Victorian to the 1960s, and considerable adaptations took place early in the 1990s.
It is the second site of the Faculty of Community Studies & Education, housing the
Departments of Health Care Studies, Psychology & Speech Pathology, and
Physiotherapy, totalling 2,200 students. This site was originally seen as one of the first to
be disposed of in the implementation of this Strategy, but in view of the expansion in
health-related courses and the site's close proximity to the Central Manchester
Healthcare Trust it has been decided to retain it in use for the time being. A decision
about the timing of the transfer of its activities to All Saints will be taken later in the
The buildings on this campus, totalling 15,100m2 gross (11,100m2 net) were designed
for the purpose in the 1960s and were partly renovated in the 1990s, supplemented in
1996 with the opening of a new library. They were recently listed (Grade II) as an
outstanding example of postwar architecture. The campus, which totals 1.5ha, is the
home of the Food, Clothing and Hospitality Management Faculty, consisting of the
Departments of Food & Consumer Technology, Clothing Design & Technology, and
Hospitality & Tourism Management, with 2,400 students.
3.9 RESIDENTIAL ACCOMMODATION
Residential accommodation is required in order to aid recruitment by meeting the
demand from prospective students for hall places. The University now owns over 1,100
places in three halls of residence in Manchester and a further 750 places divided between
Crewe and Alsager. Two of the Manchester halls (Cambridge and Cavendish) are at All
Saints, one (Broomhurst) sited opposite the Didsbury Campus. In addition, there are over
1,300 places in Manchester leased from, and managed by, the private sector: Daisy Bank
Hall near the Elizabeth Gaskell Campus, Briarfields near All Saints and Wilmslow Park
to the south of the Higher Education Precinct. Finally, there is one hall (Montgomery),
which is held on lease due to expire in 2006. It is in a more isolated and undesirable
location by Alexandra Park and there are no plans to renew the lease. The Manchester
halls are either new or recently modernised. The MMU Cheshire halls date from the
1950s and 1960s and, while most have been recently refurbished, there is a shortage of
high-quality accommodation. Agreement has accordingly been reached with a private-
sector company to deliver by 2005 nearly 800 high-quality places in a new hall at Crewe,
which will contribute towards the implementation of the Master Plan.
3.10 OTHER SPORTS FACILITIES
The University uses additional sports facilities in Manchester which are owned and
managed by others. These include the City Council's Platt Lane Centre, which has an
all-weather pitch and an indoor training area. Rugby and football grounds are also hired
as required, and the possibility of a long-term agreement with the City Council over the
use of pitches at the Hough End playing fields is being pursued..
3.11 THE HIGHER EDUCATION PRECINCT
Three of the Manchester sites (All Saints, Aytoun and Elizabeth Gaskell) are sited within
Manchester's Higher Education Precinct, together with UMIST, the Royal Northern
College of Music, the main site of the Victoria University of Manchester and the
Manchester Royal Infirmary. The development of this area in terms of buildings, access
to and within the precinct, the environment and residential accommodation, is monitored
and co-ordinated by a Precinct Planning Committee, which also includes representatives
of the Planning Department of Manchester City Council. The Precinct is regarded by the
City Council as a distinct development area within the overall City Centre Local Plan.
The most recent initiative concerns the development of an Integrated Travel Plan for the
Precinct, in order to encourage alternatives to single-occupancy car use. The Knowledge
Capital concept has led to a re-examination of the HEP in the wider context of
knowledge-based activities in Greater Manchester. The imminent merger of UMIST and
the Victoria University, scheduled for October 2004, is expected to lead to significant
changes in the physical structure of the new University of Manchester and may
eventually have an effect on the location of HE activities within the Precinct.
4: PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT
4.1 Estate Data
The operational estate is summarised as follows:
no of bldgs nett m2 gross m2 bedspaces
109 193,623 230,654 -
Residences M/C 8 2,557
Cheshire 43,007 61,870
Sports Facilities 2 2,618 2,983 -
A full survey of the whole estate, checking existing data and providing information on
room usage, has recently been completed and a full analysis is on-going. The
distribution of accommodation by department and faculty is given in Appendix 2.
The University's buildings range in age from 1785 to 2003 and the distribution is shown
Floor Area (Msq)
Pre 1900 ,1980-2000
(10%) (14%) (60%) (16%)
The whole estate was last surveyed for condition in 1997, and a supplementary
survey was carried out in 2000 for Hollings and Elizabeth Gaskell and in 2001 for
All Saints. A summary follows:
The RICS building maintenance definitions apply:
A - as new
B - sound, operationally safe, only minor deterioration
C - operational but major repair or replacement needed soon
D - unoperable or serious risk of failure or breakdown
4.4 Teaching Space
A result of the Polytechnic's Accommodation Strategy was to make the faculties of the
University coterminous with sites and responsible for managing the use of the space on
the site. The faculties are also large academic communities each catering for 2,400-
5,200 students. There is therefore no purpose in installing a central timetabling system
for the University while it is distributed across several sites, although it would have
benefits in specific circumstances, e.g. for large lecture theatres on the All Saints
Campus, which are in considerable demand.
Each faculty is responsible for timetabling its own courses. While some computer-
assisted methods are used at present, the more sophisticated Scientia system is due to be
adopted across the University in order to ensure the most effective use of space. Courses
are timetabled between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. Monday to Thursday (9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday)
– although in some faculties timetabling beyond 5 p.m. is uncommon – generally for 35
weeks of the year, and there are no current plans to alter this pattern.
A space utilisation survey was carried out in both Manchester and MMU Cheshire
during the 2001-2 academic year. This revealed poor utilisation which has reinforced the
view that substantial rationalisation needs to occur: the Frequency Rate in Manchester
(the percentage of time the rooms were occupied) was 44% while the Occupancy Rate
(percentage of places occupied when the room was in use) was 35%, giving an overall
Utilisation Rate (FR x OR) of just 15.4%. In Cheshire the figures were FR = 37%, OR
= 32% and UR = 11.8%.
In view of the dispersed nature of the premises and the associated lack of opportunities
for reassigning surplus timetable slots, there are no plans in present circumstances to
introduce a central system of charging for the use of teaching space.
It is therefore essential to ensure that the best use is being made of the available space
and there is obviously considerable scope for improvement. The progressive
standardisation of a computer-based timetabling system across the University will
facilitate the assessment of this, in conjunction with continuing audits to compare
planned with actual use, and will provide a vehicle for the development of good practice.
The implementation of the Master Plans will be based upon calculations of far higher
utilisation rates, to be achieved by central timetabling. It is estimated that space savings
of up to 20% can be achieved in this way.
4.5 Shared Facilities
Opportunities also exist for sharing the use of facilities with neighbouring institutions.
There has for many years been an agreement (the Consortium of Academic Libraries in
Manchester, or CALIM) for mutual access to the libraries of the five major higher
education institutions in Manchester and Salford (now extended to include North West
Academic Libraries - NoWAL), the Dryden Street nursery is a joint project with the
Victoria University and the Sugden Sports Centre is another joint project, this time with
UMIST (extended during 2003/4 to include the Victoria University). The new
Manchester Aquatics centre is provided jointly with UMIST, the Victoria University and
the City Council.
4.6 Fitness for Purpose
A brief summary overview of each site is given below.
It is clear from observations that many buildings do not meet current needs in terms of
fitness for purpose, there having been significant changes in the curriculum and in
methods of teaching over the years.
All Saints (excl. JD) - Significant expenditure has been concentrated on this site
over the last few years and functional utility in many areas
is good. There are still areas where improvements could
occur eg the Chatham and Grosvenor Buildings.
Alsager - Some significant upgrading in recent years means that the
majority of the Sports Science facilities are in good order.
However, a number of temporary buildings exist and the
Creative Arts block built in the 1940s is poor both in terms
of condition and functionality. Like Crewe, the Alsager
campus contains a large number of old-fashioned
Aytoun - With the exception of the library block and new lecture theatre,
few facilities reflect modern standards. Of particular concern is
the office provision and size and disposition of teaching rooms.
Crewe - Considerable effort in the past has been put into
rationalising the estate. The residences remain a problem as
they are inefficiently proportioned and lack modern
Didsbury - The utilisation of teaching space reflects the nature of
subjects taught here and is characterised by peaks in
demand for part of the year. Inevitably buildings designed
30 years ago do not accurately reflect the changed teaching
or learning patterns. There is a shortage of appropriately-
sized teaching accommodation and offices.
E. Gaskell - Despite some improvements over the past decade, the
functional utility needs improving (especially with regards to
library access) and significant maintenance work is required.
Hollings - The library extension is very good but the remainder contains
some outdated facilities and has poor functional utility. The listed
buildings represent a considerable future maintenance liability.
John Dalton - This site has been characterised by a poor match between modern
science and engineering requirements and available facilities. The
current building projects will bring substantial improvements.
However, some parts of the 1970s buildings will still require
5: FUTURE REQUIREMENTS
5.1 The future of higher education contains many uncertainties due to social, educational and
technical changes such as developments in on-line learning. There may well be more
variety in the routes chosen by some students to obtain their degrees. However, bearing
in mind the educational value of face-to-face interaction with others, the practical
elements of many courses and the social aspects of university life, a major change from
the current patterns of attendance for full time undergraduate programmes does not
appear likely in the timeframe of this Strategy.
5.2 A Future Accommodation Requirements Review Group, consisting of senior academics
and those concerned with developments in learning and teaching, was set up to examine
the implications for the Estate Strategy of predictable changes in the use of University
facilities. The principal conclusion was the need for maximum flexibility in the design of
new or remodelled premises. This will provide the ability to accommodate different
modes of study and shifts in the nature and sizes of the teaching spaces and other
facilities required. The details of the courses available are also under continuous review,
with different combinations of subjects being offered to meet changing student
5.3 In physical terms, providing flexibility will involve buildings which are readily adaptable
to a variety of layouts without major reconstruction. They will also need to provide full
accessibility to meet the terms of the Disability Discrimination Act. Flexibility in course
provision is also clearly helped or hindered by the degree of geographical proximity of
the academic staff and, where needed, specialist facilities.
5.4 The University's aspirations to offer a high quality of educational experience for all
students, together with appropriate facilities for staff, have implications for the quality of
the premises available. A common, high standard should be provided throughout the
institution. This applies not only to teaching and learning spaces, but also to social,
recreational and residential accommodation.
5.5 While achieving consistent high quality, it is essential to keep to a minimum the
proportion of the University's budget spent on premises and facilities in order to devote
as many resources as possible to learning, teaching and research. A high degree of
efficiency must therefore be aimed for, in terms of premises provision, maintenance and
running costs and in the staffing of support services.
5.6 University buildings are not just for teaching and study. Surveys of student opinion have
revealed the importance of an adequate range of convenient and attractive informal areas
in which students can work together, socialise and purchase refreshments. Staff also
value social spaces within easy reach.
5.7 The ability to offer residential accommodation is important in attracting first-year
students, especially from abroad, so the University's aim has long been to acquire enough
places to meet this demand. Experience has shown that it is also necessary for such
accommodation to be closely associated with the University, secure, of good quality and
in a convenient location close to the academic facilities being used. The leasing of halls
from the private sector in Manchester in recent years has enabled the University to
achieve its aim, so a hall place can now be offered to all full-time first year students from
outside Greater Manchester. MMU Cheshire has always had the ability to meet the
demand from first year students, but the halls there are ageing and not up to modern
standards, so are being replaced over a period of time with new construction.
5.8 Opportunities for participating in sporting and recreational activities are valued by many
students and it is therefore considered important to provide access to good-quality
facilities, conveniently located, in both Crewe and Manchester.
5.9 The University has an extensive collection of art and craft materials for which display
facilities are at present extremely limited. It is therefore intended to provide a gallery to
exhibit the collection as a part of this Strategy, and to seek Museum & Gallery status.
5.10 All of the premises need to provide an environment of high quality for the enjoyment of
staff and students. This means paying due attention to the landscaping of external areas
and to the provision of safe and attractive pedestrian routes.
5.11 A large university campus generates a substantial quantity of traffic every day with its
associated parking demands; a particular problem in urban areas. The University has
joined with the other two Manchester universities, the RNCM, the Hospital Trust and the
City Council in a study aimed at developing an Integrated Travel Plan for the Higher
Education Precinct. This proposes improved provision for cyclists, the identification of
worthwhile new public transport routes, interest free loans for season tickets together
with discounted rates for them, and extended parking management measures.
5.12 The University's ability to achieve the requirements indicated above is severely
constrained by its present physical configuration. It has therefore been necessary to
review in a comprehensive way the nature of the existing estate in order to determine the
appropriate future strategy.
6: PROBLEMS, OPPORTUNITIES AND OPTIONS
6.1.1 The key problem in delivering the requirements outlined in Section 5 is the nature of the
University's estate. The existence of seven widely-spread campuses militates against
close academic cooperation between disciplines, enforces the duplication of libraries and
other support facilities and prevents the most efficient use of the premises. There is a
substantial in-built cost penalty in terms of excess space and support services staffing.
6.1.2 The University also possesses a wide range of buildings, a high proportion of them
dating from the 1960s and 1970s. While some are excellent, many of them are costly to
run, difficult for the physically disabled to access and no longer well suited to their
purposes. The cost involved in bringing all of the existing buildings and grounds up to
the standard of the best and maintaining this into the future would be extremely high.
6.1.3 Notwithstanding the inefficiencies in utilising the existing premises, there are some
general shortfalls in academic accommodation. The most prominent is the growing
demand for smaller spaces to house research staff and units, attracted as a result of the
University's developing research profile. At the other end of the scale, the greatest need
for teaching space is for large, well-equipped lecture theatres. The current pattern of
room sizes is not well matched to the demands.
6.1.4 The provision of access for the physically disabled is now a legal requirement in all new
and remodelled buildings and under the terms of the Disability Discrimination Act is
soon to become required in all premises providing services to the public. Provision of
such access is very varied across the University's building stock; to make it universal
would involve immense cost. A programme of works to improve access is therefore
been prepared, having regard to the importance of particular facilities being available,
the degree of benefit gained by improving access and the cost of so doing.
6.1.5 As well as the general problems outlined above, there are specific difficulties affecting
particular sites or subject areas. Examples are:
1. The Faculty of Art & Design needs to expand to meet the demand for its courses but is
hindered by space limitations caused by mismatched accommodation.
2. On the Aytoun site, the Minto & Turner Building is completely unused and in poor
condition, and parts of the Minshull and Main Buildings also need refurbishment. The
configuration of the buildings, and the external environment, prevent the site from
becoming more than barely satisfactory.
3. On the Didsbury Campus, many of the buildings have seen few changes since they were
4. A key element of the All Saints site - St Augustine's School - is only held on lease by the
University (expiry date August 2008). It is considered a priority to secure the freehold
or long leasehold of this property so that the site can be developed and the Diocese has
recently indicated a willingness to enter into negotiations. However, the legal situation is
complicated by the City Council's interest in the site, dating from when they provided it
for the school to be built.
5. The planned road closures on the All Saints site will generate a need for a significant
improvement scheme to create a more attractive, pedestrian, campus environment.
6.1.6 Playing fields in Manchester are currently only secured on a short-term basis and their
use needs to be consolidated for the future
6.1.7 The University provides a range of catering outlets with at least one on each site (and six
on the All Saints Campus). Most of these were upgraded in a rolling programme which
started in the 1980s, and some are now showing their age. A survey of student opinion
revealed a generally low level of satisfaction with many aspects of the provision and
indicated that a thorough review was needed (the first phase of which has been the
successful adaptation of the former Students' Union facilities at Aytoun and Didsbury
and the refurbishment of the Hollings refectory).
6.1.8 Considerable advances in the provision of good quality residential accommodation have
been made in Manchester in recent years, with Cambridge Halls opening in 1998, the
first phase of Daisy Bank Hall in 1999 and the second phase in 2000, together with the
leasing of space in Briarfields Hall and Wilmslow Park. In all, this has added a total of
over 2,100 new places, with 60% of them en-suite. However, those in Crewe and
Alsager have received only superficial refurbishment since opening in the 1960s and
1970s. A major new development of nearly 800 high-quality, en-suite rooms will
therefore be taking place between 2004 and 2005.
6.2.1 A key opportunity in resolving the multi-site issue is the considerable increase in the
value of property which has occurred in Manchester in recent years. The potential sale
value of several of the University's sites is now a significant fraction of the rebuilding
cost, particularly when opportunities for achieving economies are taken into account,
through making more efficient use of space and concentrating support facilities. New
buildings would also be less expensive to run and their construction would solve a
number of issues concerning access and the quality of premises and facilities.
6.2.2 Equally important is the possibility of building considerably more accommodation on
the All Saints Campus. In part this could be new build, in part replacement for existing,
less satisfactory buildings. A Master Planning exercise has demonstrated that there is
sufficient capacity to replace all of the other teaching and support facilities in
Manchester, enabling a complete concentration on the All Saints Campus, although for
practical and financial reasons this would need to be spread over a considerable period.
6.2.3 The University has a strong commitment to developing its presence in South Cheshire.
The ability to offer courses in the region, together with the links developed with south
Cheshire colleges, are regarded as valuable in their own right. The Crewe Campus,
while smaller than Alsager, is better located to serve south Cheshire in general and the
developing business and residential town of Crewe in particular, and has therefore been
selected as the future base for MMU Cheshire. Replication of the sports facilities
currently at Alsager will require the acquisition of more land for playing fields, but there
are opportunities for this within walking distance. There is also land available across the
road from the Campus, which is being developed for residential purposes.
6.2.4 In recent years, the options for providing halls of residence have been transformed by the
development of the private sector. Several privately owned and managed halls, totalling
over 3,000 places, have been constructed or are under construction within a short walk of
the All Saints Campus, and more are planned. This benefits the University in two ways;
their availability improves the choice available to second and third year students, and
they open up the possibility of various kinds of arrangements, such as that concerning
Daisy Bank Hall, which enable the University to offer some of the places to first year
students by short, medium or long term arrangements without incurring any capital
expenditure. A similar approach is being taken with a long-term agreement at Crewe.
Clearly, the balance between owning and controlling accommodation, and entering into
a range of agreements with a substantial private market, needs to be considered.
6.2.5 The planned merger between UMIST and the Victoria University may provide
opportunities of various kinds for the rationalisation of facilities, particularly concerning
sports provision. Manchester City Council is also keen to be involved in reviewing the
ownership, use and management of sports facilities throughout Manchester.
6.3.1 The 1995 Estate Strategy incorporated the identification and evaluation of more radical
possibilities including the disposal of some or all of the current sites. These were
rejected as uneconomic at that time but it is now appropriate to re-examine the issues.
6.3.2 The theoretical options range from taking no action to replacing all of the existing
facilities on a new, green field site. The options can briefly be summarised as follows:
6.3.3 OPTION 1: To take no action, other than carrying out essential replacement and repair
6.3.4 OPTION 2: To refurbish the existing estate to ensure that it is fit for its purpose.
6.3.5 OPTION 3: To concentrate on a smaller number of the existing major sites.
6.3.6 OPTION 4: To move, partly or completely, to a new site or sites.
6.4.1 A consultation paper exploring the possibility of concentrating the University on a
smaller number of sites was circulated to all staff, the Students' Union and local political
interests in the autumn of 2000, supplemented by an open consultation meeting being
held on each site. A generally favourable response having been received, this was
followed by a second phase of consultation in the spring of 2001, following circulation
of a draft version of this strategy.
6.4.2 The results of the consultation revealed general support for concentration (i.e. Option 3).
Option 4 received no support and has not been examined further, given the key strategic
locations of the existing campuses at All Saints and Crewe.
6.4.3 The main estates concerns were expressed by some staff worried about the possibility of
overcrowding at All Saints and the potential difficulty in car parking. In response to this,
careful attention will be paid to environmental and traffic management issues in any
plans to develop the Campus. Concerns were also expressed by Congleton Borough
Council and Alsager Town Council about the potential economic impact of a University
withdrawal from the Alsager Campus. However, any withdrawal would take place over
a period of several years and it is unlikely that it would be completed until close to the
end of the ten-year Strategy.
6.4.4 An important non-estates issue raised in the consultation was a concern expressed by
support staff for their future employment if sites close. It does not necessarily follow
that all posts at a site would be lost if it closed; the University is keen to improve the
quality of services provided which may mean additional posts on the remaining sites. In
any case, the University would seek to offer redeployment to alternative posts and has a
good record in achieving this.
7: EVALUATION OF OPTIONS
7.1 Financial Evaluation
7.1.1 This section comprises a financial comparison of three options for providing an estate
that supports the University‟s academic and business objectives. The review considers
the costs under each option and provides a comparison in terms of the total cost and
the net present value of costs over a 25 year period. At this stage, only the Manchester
sites have been considered; a comparable analysis of the proposal to concentrate
MMU Cheshire activities at Crewe will take place once more information about costs
7.1.2 The three options have been selected from an initial list of four options that range
between „do minimum‟ at one extreme to „relocation to a new site‟ at the other
extreme. The relocation option has not been subjected to financial appraisal on the
grounds that it is highly unlikely that a suitable alternative site can be found in central
Manchester and there are considerable advantages to continuing to be located in
Manchester‟s Higher Education Precinct.
7.1.3 The three options are:
i Retain existing Manchester estate and undertake replacement and repair works
that are required to meet statutory requirements;
ii Refurbish existing Manchester estate to create fit for purpose accommodation;
iii Rationalise estate and reconfigure the All Saints Campus (identified as the
preferred option in the 2001 Estates Strategy).
7.1.4 The financial analysis indicates that Option 3 offers the greatest value for money over
the 25 year period. Table 1 illustrates that the gross total cost of Option 3 is £440m,
which is £186m cheaper than Option 2 and £263m cheaper than Option 1 over the 25
year appraisal period.
Table 1 – Comparison of Option Costs at 2002/2003 Prices
Option 1 Option 2 Option 3
£000 £000 £000
NPV of Option 395,119 375,264 285,492
Gross Cost of Option 702,712 625,956 439,771
Ranking 3 2 1
Table 2 indicates that whilst Option 3 requires relatively high capital expenditure, it
achieves value for money due to significantly higher capital receipts and cost efficiency
savings resulting from site rationalisation. Option 3 also benefits from a relatively
strong revenue stream due to the fact that it provides the highest quality estate of the
three options and will therefore help to maintain student enrolments at current levels.
7.1.5 The costs comprising the NPV reflect the main cost components in the project. The
greatest cost is with regard to operations, which includes premises running costs as well
as staffing and reactive maintenance. Planned property replacements and planned
maintenance are included in lifecycle costs. Residual values reflect the expected value
of buildings at the end of the 25 year project and capital receipts relate to the income
anticipated from the disposal of surplus sites. Other costs/revenues include the cost of
losing income from student fees, accommodation at Loxford Hall and other relevant
costs not included in the above categories.
Table 2 – Costs/(Revenues) Comprising the NPV
Option 1 Option 2 Option 3
£000 £000 £000
Cost Category NPV NPV NPV
Capital 65,648 108,497 105,768
Running Costs 210,600 210,188 195,913
Lifecycle 45,777 43,854 40,766
Residual values (11,755) (18,030) (19,418)
Capital Receipts (17,000) (17,000) (26,697)
Other Costs/Revenues 101,849 47,755 (10,840)
Total 395,119 375,264 285,492
Option 3 is affordable and the project has been appraised on a cashflow basis that
illustrates a necessity to borrow to cover the cost of capital works in the formative years
of the project. This necessity is for cashflow reasons and even after the cost of loan
financing the project returns a positive NPV.
7.1.6 In summary, it is assumed that in addition to capital reserves, an annual contribution of
£2m from the capital programme, capital receipts and receipt of HEFCE grants will be
utilised. A prudent approach has been adopted since the only grants assumed are those
where receipt is certain and we understand there may be scope for additional grant
funding which would improve the affordability position.
7.1.7 The three short-listed options are described in more detail in the table overleaf.
Option 1 Continue to operate the 5 existing Manchester sites.
Do minimum: Retain existing Comply with health and safety, fire, DDA and other relevant
Manchester estate and buildings-related legislation.
undertake replacement and
repair works that are required to Building element and plant replacement programme.
meet statutory requirements Cyclical programme of internal and external decoration.
No major remodelling to improve fitness for purpose.
Complete John Dalton Phases 1 and 2
Refurbish Loxford Tower for student accommodation.
Option 2 Continue to operate the 5 existing Manchester sites.
Refurbish existing Manchester Undertake a programme of major refurbishment at Aytoun and
estate to create fit for purpose Hollings with the objective of providing accommodation that
accommodation keeps abreast of changes in teaching, learning and other student
Complete John Dalton Phases 1 and 2
Refurbish Loxford Tower for student accommodation.
Option 3 Demolition, new build, refurbishment and environmental
improvements in accordance with the All Saints Master Plan,
Rationalise estate and including:
reconfigure the All Saints
Campus Acquisition of leasehold at St Augustine‟s
Complete John Dalton Phases 1 and 2
New build to accommodate relocation of Aytoun
Faculty of FCHM new build/refurbishment
Decant activities to All Saints and Didsbury and Gaskell.
Increased utilisation of accommodation through implementing
centralised timetabling and consolidating activities.
Vacate and dispose of Aytoun and Hollings.
Relocation from Loxford Tower to Ormond Building- £1m and
close office accommodation within Loxford Administration.
Headcount and revenue constant as a result of improved
curriculum, facilities and staff to student ratio.
7.1.8 Table 3 below compares by option the floor area of academic and support space
provided at each site. All include approximately 5,600sqm for the new construction of
All Saints West. The table shows that under Option 3 the floor area is 14,632 sqm
lower than the current provision, reflecting space efficiencies.
Table 3 – Floor areas for buildings retained under the three options
Option 1 Option 2 Option 3
sqm sqm sqm
Elizabeth Gaskell 13,121 13,121 13,121
Hollings 14,569 14,569
Aytoun 23,221 23,221
New Aytoun 19,158
All Saints 114,475 114,475 114,475
FCHM New Build 4,000
Didsbury 22,005 22,005 22,005
Total Area 187,391 187,391 172,759
7.2 General Assumptions
7.2.1 The review considers the proposed reconfiguration of the central Manchester sites. It
does not consider any costs or interdependencies with the Crewe and Alsager
7.2.2 A 25 year timescale has been used for the appraisal of the three options.
7.2.3 Only relevant costs that are dependent on the choice of option have been considered.
7.2.4 Financial forecasts assume a price base of 2002/03. Historic costs and revenues have
been inflated to this base and this also provides the base date for determining net
7.2.5 Models that have been used in determining costs are stated in real terms and costs have
been discounted at a real rate of 6%. Real inflation/growth has been added where
relevant, based on BCIS indices as at September 2002.
7.2.6 Costs and revenues are based on historic cost data and forecasts developed in
conjunction with Finance and Estate Planning personnel.
7.2.7 Replacement of student residences is assumed to be self-financing and is not included
in the model other than with additional costs and revenues relating to Loxford Tower.
7.3 Capital Costs
7.3.1 Capital costs under the three options reflect the level of investment deemed necessary
to deliver each of the possible solutions. Costs have been adjusted for expected growth
in building costs over the period of works. As demonstrated in table 4, the total capital
costs of Option 3, which involves site rationalisation and investment in the All Saints
Campus are less than Option 2, which entails refurbishment of all five sites in order to
improve the fitness of purpose and obtain a quality of accommodation comparable to
that provided under Option 3.
Table 4 – Capital Costs
Option 1 Option 2 Option 3
£000 £000 £000
NPV 65,648 108,497 105,768
Total Cost 66,987 128,663 116,597
NPV NPV NPV
John Dalton Refurbishment 39,818 39,818 39,818
All Saints West New Build 14,863 14,863 14,863
Loxford Tower Refurbishment/
Demolition 6,303 6,303 943
DDA Compliance Works 4,664 3,887 3,401
Purchase of St Augustine's
Freehold 0 0 445
Aytoun Refurbishment 0 25,156 0
Hollings Refurbishment 0 13,307 0
Decant - Aytoun Refurbishment 0 4,723 0
Decant - Hollings Refurbishment 0 440 0
FCHM New Build/Refurbishment 0 0 6,666
Aytoun New Build 0 0 39,632
Total 65,648 108,497 105,768
7.3.2 All three options include costs of £40m for committed works at John Dalton. These
works will continue regardless of the preferred option selected by the University.
7.3.3 Costs of Option 3 shown in table 4 reflect the works necessary to progress stage 1 of
the Estates Strategy 2001. A £56m cost (£46m NPV) for the new build for FCHM and
for the Aytoun relocation have been reflected in this option appraisal and further
enhancement works such as refurbishment of catering facilities and the building of car
parking facilities have been excluded. This is to ensure comparability between options
since the total capital costs identified by the Estates Planning Department for Option 3
include enhancement works that would provide a higher specification of facilities than
under Options 1 and 2. Such additional enhancement works are to be considered later
in the Estates Strategy review process as future affordability and funding opportunities
7.3.4 The £56m cost identified above represents 82.5% of the expected cost of the new build
for the Aytoun relocation as well as the total cost of the FCHM building. Again this
adjustment has been performed since the proposed works are for a higher specification
of facility than under Options 1 and 2.
7.3.5 The weight of evidence is clearly in favour of Option 3 which has, accordingly, been
selected by the University Board of Governors.
8: POSSIBLE IMPLEMENTATION PLAN AND FINANCING
8.1.1 The University's policy is to finance capital developments from disposal proceeds and
reserves, supplemented by HEFCE capital grants (an important element of some
projects) and borrowing against major building projects. The buildings constructed are
used as primary security for loans and if necessary other eligible assets are pledged as
makeweight security to satisfy commercial collateral requirements. A policy of
borrowing at medium or long term fixed rates has been adopted to ensure that the cost of
servicing and repaying debt is known for at least the first 10 years, of any loan exceeding
8.1.2 At the end of each financial year, the University has been able to make an annual
contribution to the capital programme from the revenue budget to the extent deemed
8.1.3 It is clear that sufficient funds cannot be identified at this time to achieve the complete
concentration of the Manchester operation at All Saints, or of the transfer of all of the
Alsager activities to Crewe. For this reason, further consideration of the transfer of the
Gaskell and Didsbury Campuses is being deferred to the second half of the ten year
Strategy. Concentration at Crewe is the subject of a separate Master Planning exercise to
develop a phased programme for implementation over a period of several years.
8.1.4 All smaller planned building projects are reviewed in the annual budget round and
projects are amended, postponed or cancelled if it is considered that there are insufficient
cash reserves to carry out the projects. It will be important to maintain a small projects
portfolio such that academic departments do not suffer as a result of “planning blight” on
any particular site.
8.1.5 In order to fund the scale of expenditure implicit in this Strategy, it will be necessary to
obtain the maximum possible receipts from the disposal of vacated sites. Bids will also
be made to appropriate sources of HEFCE capital funding.
8.2.1 Following the selection of Option 3, there are four separate issues to consider. The
most fundamental is the extent to which Manchester activities are to be concentrated
at All Saints. Clearly, the benefits described in section 7.3 would be maximised by
concentrating all Manchester activities at All Saints. The issues are therefore; the
order in which the sites at All Saints are developed, the order in which activities are
transferred from each of the other campuses, and the timing of these events. On a
smaller scale, a similar range of issues arises at Crewe. The detailed implementation
of the strategy will be considered in an Operating Statement.
8.2.2 It will be necessary for financial reasons to carry out the major building projects
required to achieve concentration in several phases. As capital receipts will play a
significant part in funding the required building work, there will need to be a
sequence of disposal of surplus sites alternating with construction projects.
8.2.3 Given the uncertainties around the future direction of, and funding arrangements for,
higher education, it would in any case obviously be prudent to approach the
implementation of greater concentration in stages. Projects will need to be planned so
that each stage is self-contained in case changing circumstances militate against any
8.2.4 A Master Plan has already been produced for the All Saints Campus in order to
address the location, size and phasing of possible developments on the Campus.
Following the completion of the All Saints West and John Dalton developments, this
will focus on the replacement of the Loxford Building.
8.2.5 Responses to the consultation exercise indicate a clear wish by the Business School to
relocate at All Saints as soon as possible. This should therefore feature as the next
stage of the implementation of the Strategy. Given the relatively small size and high
running costs associated with the Hollings Campus, and the possibility of creating
closer links with allied subject areas, it is recommended that the Food, Clothing &
Hospitality Management Faculty should be relocated to the All Saints Campus at
approximately the same time.
8.2.6 By the time the transfer of Aytoun and Hollings has been completed, this would only
leave the Elizabeth Gaskell and Didsbury Campus in Manchester in addition to All
Saints. Current indications are that the initial assumptions made about the costs of the
earlier phases and the capital receipts resulting from the sales of surplus sites,
combined with HEFCE guidance on maximum borrowing, would probably preclude
any further major projects for a significant period. It is therefore recommended that a
decision on the relocation of Elizabeth Gaskell and Didsbury should be deferred until
later in the planning cycle
8.2.7 Integral to the changes outlined above is the development of the All Saints Campus.
The detailed implementation of the Master Plan will need to take account of:
The work on John Dalton which will soon be completed.
The planned availability of the Loxford and St Augustine's School sites.
The need to encompass revisions to library, IT, Media Services, student support,
social, recreational and catering provision as well as to accommodate the
academic activities from outlying sites.
The requirement to seek economical building solutions while achieving an
efficient and attractive built form.
The importance of creating a welcoming environment for staff, students and
The work already done on an Integrated Travel Plan for the HE Precinct, and its
implications for staff travel and parking plus alternative means of transport.
How the buildings would be constructed, including contractors' access routes and
The need for realistic time and cost estimates for each phase of the Master Plan, to
allow the University to embark upon its implementation with confidence.
8.2.8 There is currently a considerable variation in the utilisation rates of premises across
the University; some buildings are heavily used, some much less so. Before deciding
on the scale of any new building, it will be necessary to evaluate the current
performance and aim to provide an equitable allocation of space, efficiently used. To
achieve this will require a coordinated timetabling system covering all non-specialist
teaching space at All Saints. It is anticipated that this will identify significant
economies in the use of space, helping to reduce further the costs of construction and
maintenance. A similar exercise will take place at Crewe.
8.2.9 It will be necessary to rethink the current provision of catering facilities at All Saints,
particularly since a demolition of Loxford would see the loss of the Metro Centre and
the expansion of administrative requirements might displace Staff House (used for
function catering as well as staff meals). In the short term any reductions will be
compensated by increased utilisation of other facilities, which is planned to include
the remodelling and extension of the Chatham refectory. The construction of a major
new University building could provide the opportunity to establish a very efficient,
integrated central catering facility to meet the needs of staff, students and function
8.2.10 Rationalisation at MMU Cheshire has been examined separately by commissioning a
Master Plan to provide a framework for a phased transfer of activities from Alsager. It
is clear that both Crewe & Nantwich Borough Council and Cheshire County Council
welcome the development of a substantial University presence in the Crewe area
which will assist with the development of the site.
8.2.11 Despite the additional space and facilities at Alsager, Crewe is a much better location
in terms of accessibility for both public and private transport, and because of the
larger population in the immediate vicinity. A complete relocation would be very
expensive and unless substantial funding were received from HEFCE or other sources
it appears likely that financial constraints would preclude the commencement of
consolidation on one site until, at the earliest, the second half of the Estate Strategy
timescale, i.e. after 2005/6, with the completion of the transfer several years after that.
9.1 The original Development Plan, prepared by the City when the Polytechnic was first
established in 1970, envisaged the institution located on one campus, at All Saints. The
accretion of sites through successive mergers subsequently made the single campus
location appear unattainable. Other strategies for rationalisation were therefore
developed. The 1995 Estate Strategy and its predecessor, the Polytechnic
Accommodation Strategy, provided sound guides to the evolutionary development of the
University's property holdings. Since then, a combination of circumstances has led to the
possibility of a return to the more radical approach. The academic case for closely co-
located academic disciplines, and a coherent student community, has remained strong.
Other circumstances include the continuing pressures on higher education finances, the
need to provide the most flexible facilities to accommodate new course combinations
and delivery methods, pressures to improve the quality and accessibility of our property,
and the opportunities created by much higher land values and substantial private
9.2 Given the changes in central government policy towards higher education and the
uncertainty over the future pattern of student choices, it is impossible to plan for the
longer term with any precision. Given also that the prime requirements of an Estate
Strategy have to be efficiency combined with flexibility and affordability, the Strategy
must be resilient enough to withstand possible future policies which may range from
some reductions in student numbers to further increases.
9.3 In view of the issues raised in the previous sections, the option which clearly offers the
most advantages in the provision of facilities for academic developments is Option 3.
The factors in Section 6.1 also point to the need for significant changes to the stock of
9.4 Several decisions have already been taken which are compatible with, or prepare the
ground for, the implementation of Option 3, as follows:
1. Commissioning of a Master Plan to test the feasibility of, and provide a
framework for, the development of the All Saints and Crewe Campuses.
2. Construction of the All Saints West Building to enable the relocation in 2003 of
the School of Law from the Elizabeth Gaskell Campus.
3. Preparation and implementation of a development plan to meet the
accommodation needs of the Faculty of Science & Engineering, plus
commencement of the first two phases of reconstruction in 2003.
4. The disposal of both Greystoke and Needham Halls following the acquisition of
replacement residential accommodation close to the All Saints Campus.
5. An agreement to construct nearly 800 residential places at Crewe.
6. Wide consultation over future sub-options concerning the possible transfer to All
Saints of activities at other sites, and the concentration of most MMU Cheshire
activities on one campus at Crewe.
9.5 The following additional tasks are proposed for 2004/5 to implement the Estate Strategy:
1. Analyse the accommodation needs of all of the activities currently on the All
Saints Campus and those at Aytoun and Hollings Campuses, in order to prepare a
brief for the new and adapted buildings required to house all of them at All
2. Consider the possibility of acquiring a site in a less expensive location within
Manchester in order to house major support activities which do not need to be on
the All Saints Campus.
3. Produce costed plans for the series of projects required to concentrate the
activities at Aytoun and Hollings Campus at All Saints, including their
consequences in terms of library, IT, Media Services, student support, social and
4. Prepare a detailed, phased and costed plan for the development of the Crewe
Campus and the transfer of activities from Alsager.
5. Prepare a development plan for the phased disposal and future use of the Alsager
Campus, and the associated land transfers to relocate the playing fields.
6. Implement the plans to purchase the leased former St Augustine's School site at
All Saints, and to proceed with road closures through the Campus.
9.6 Tasks for later years will include reviews of the activities at the Elizabeth Gaskell and
Didsbury Campuses to determine whether, and if so when, they will be transferred to All
9.7 In addition to the specific actions listed above it is proposed to establish some general
principles to guide future developments, subject to the approval where appropriate of
individual cases by the Estates & Services Committee, as follows:
1. Acquisitions: to seek to acquire, as opportunities arise, the freehold or long
leasehold of any properties in the area bounded by Oxford Road, Rosamund Street,
Cambridge Street and Chester Street, and to consider site acquisitions should
property become available close to the All Saints Campus.
2. Disposals: to dispose of properties declared surplus to requirements, having taken
into account all of the appropriate market advice.
3. Traffic: to seek to create, as far as possible, a traffic-free environment within the All
Saints Campus and, in the light of the changing national and local environment with
regard to the treatment of traffic and parking in towns, to co-operate in the
implementation of the integrated Travel Plan for the Higher Education Precinct
4. Commercial income: in the course of any future development of the All Saints
Campus, to seek to make space available for appropriate commercial activities.
5. Efficient utilisation of space: to aim to introduce a system of regular reviews of
space allocations, plus centralised timetabling of general teaching spaces, in order to
ensure the maximum utilisation of premises.
6. Promotion: to use MMU's locations to promote its presence and work, i.e. by using
buildings on major road frontages to advertise or exhibit work.