Gorton Street, Progressive Living Developments, p Nutshell Communications

The development has been in the works since before the pandemic. Credit: Our Studio

Progressive puts faith in co-living with 41-storey Salford tower

The developer has lodged proposals for a residential scheme featuring 568 homes in the city’s burgeoning Greengate district, while the hotel that was originally part of the scheme has been omitted. 

Progressive Living’s long-awaited scheme will see a narrow site off Gorton Street redeveloped into a 41-storey co-living tower, under proposals submitted to Salford City Council.  

The latest iteration of the scheme is five storeys taller than the scheme Progressive consulted on in 2021 and that is not the only change that has been made. 

In the works since before the pandemic, Progressive’s Gorton Street proposals were originally for a 36-storey tower with a 50/50 co-living and hotel split. 

However, market sentiment has prompted the developer to put all its eggs in the co-living basket, director David Fairclough told Place North West. 

“We have been working on proposals for this site for some time now and are excited to finally share this high-quality development,” Fairclough said. 

“We believe it will create a vibrant community through the array of communal spaces available to residents and promote wellbeing through its focus on lifestyle amenities. The scheme’s co-living offer will complement the mainly BTR tenure of adjacent towers in Greengate and bring a more affordable entry into city centre living.” 

Progressive said talks with a funding partner and co-living operator are at an advanced stage and that a start on site is planned for spring 2024. 

Fairclough added: “Currently being used as a surface-level car park, our vision for Gorton Street presents an opportunity to redevelop a forgotten pocket of land in a way that will positively contribute to Salford’s wider regeneration strategy for the Greengate area and deliver sought-after co-living accommodation that will provide quality, affordable places to live for young professionals.” 

Designed by BDP, the project would see the creation of a building given over solely to co-living, an emerging residential product that places an emphasis on shared amenities rather than private living space. 

The building includes four floors of amenity space that offer residents lounges, a cinema room, games room and makers space, communal cooking and dining areas, a gym and wellness centre, co-working spaces and meeting rooms.

In addition, a landscaped roof terrace and a sky bar will be accessible to residents on the 37th floor.

The railway arches located next to the tower would be repurposed into social and leisure units under separate plans currently being drawn up. 

To learn more, search for application reference 23/82208/FUL on the city council’s planning portal.  

The co-living concept is popular in cities and among graduates and is often seen as a stepping stone between student accommodation and build-to-rent. 

There are several large co-living developments under construction in Manchester including Downing’s 2,224-unit Square Gardens near First Street and two towers to be operated under Vita’s Union brand close to Factory International. 

The professional team for Progressive’s Gorton Street project also includes Zerum, Turley, Renaissance, Novo, Exterior Architecture, GIA, OFR, Our Studio, Hann Tucker, Our Studio and Hydrock. 

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Another development which could be in any city in any country

By Anonymous

The real question here is what is Progressive Living’s track record in operating and managing co-living developments. Salford City Council need to look at the policy approaches other places have and are taking eg Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds etc.

By Anonymous

Salford aka legoland

By Anonymous

A very average intervention in terms of form and impact. .

By Sceptic

Looks like they have been looking over the shoulder of Stephenson Studio for designs. Looks strikingly similar to their Toyoko Hotel and Birmingham Tower jobs…..

By Anonymous

If it’s going to be co-living at least clad it in brick which will elevate the design considerably rather than cheapen it with aluminium rain screen panels. However this is Salford premium residential district. Co-living does not belong here. @anonymous 11.24 Progressive Living won’t be managing it. It says in the article they are looking for a co-living partner.

By Andrew

Grimmer than grim.

By Roy

I am aware that schemes in the capital are not jammed full of people as you might have expected and students have been increasingly unable to find any housing in the city.
So two open questions. Firstly, how proven a concept is co-living in Manchester? Is there a demonstrable demand from a similarly sized fully running scheme? I’m aware of a number of other co-living developments progressing but not of completed ones of this scale. Secondly, if the demand from graduates doesn’t materialise could this then just PBSA through the back door on land the two councils would see as important tax revenue generating wards – or would a change in use be a big enough legal headache for an operator to discourage such ideas?

By H

Looks good, get it built.

Co-living is definitely the way forward for making the city centre more affordable for young people and key workers.


I think we’re all tired of seeing the same old B.S. designs.

By John

Well it anit going to be for people who lived and worked here all there lives .

By Anonymous

@anonymous re: “Another development which could be in any city in any country”. Interesting thought, though without any suggestions on how to be different.
What could be done to look more Mancunian?
Designing a completely bespoke, architecturally unique building is great, but is this really financially viable for budget accommodation which this is aimed at?
How is that different to other buildings. Take 95% of houses in the UK built over the last 150 years and you’ll find that whether they are terraces, semi-detached or flats, they look pretty much exactly the same as anywhere else in the country. Drop a pin with Street View on any random suburb in England and I bet you can’t tell where you are – it all looks the same (with only a few exceptions).
That said, anyone can tell a skyline apart. If someone can’t tell the difference between skylines in London, Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds or anywhere else, then I suggest the problem is with the person, not the skyline.

By Jo

An inoffensive Filler.

By Elephant

41 storeys is not bad but they should show some ambition and make it at least 50 storeys

By Giant Skyscraper Fan

Massive over development that seriously compromises the thoughtful and well executed master plan. Agree with the comment about student accom Bunche back door.

Hope this app gets slung out.

By Anonymous

it is a shame Network Rail sold the arches to the developer as they are now tied up in the process of their scheme, they are sitting derelict whilst they could of been activated, providing the growing number of residents with some amenities whilst generating them income, however small.

By Guardians of the Arches

Looks like they googled ‘London’ and thought of how to make a cheap high rise. 4.5/10.

By Proper Development Rating

@Andrew, I agree. I welcome the development, even the usage, but the cladding would be so much better in brick.

By Tom

Co living will live or die by the operation let’s hope a decent operator is chose who knows this market, also the design of the building needs a re think

By Pablo

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