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Old October 28th, 2005, 02:39 AM   #1
jrb
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London Road Fire Station! A disgraceful situation!

Went inside the the courtyard today! The two images I took show the appalling state of this fantastic building! The outside looks bad, but the inside is even worse! The current owners should be ashamed of themselves!

That is disgraceful!

Quote:
London Road Fire Station, Manchester
London Road, Central Manchester.
Designed and built by Woodhouse, Willoughby & Langham from 1904-1906 this fine Grade II listed building was headquarters of the Manchester City Fire Brigade for the first half of the 20th century. It also housed a police station and a coroner's court, the latter still being in operation.
This exuberant buff, terracotta and red brick building occupies a triangular plot and is located opposite Piccadilly Railway Station. The central courtyard includes a series of balconies, whose tenements were once home to 40 firemen, and a training tower. By any measure it was a well equipped and sumptuous complex, with its own library, stables, bank and gymnasium.
A fine baroque building, which presently is under utilised and awaiting a major cleaning and refurbishment. It was in continued occupation until the late 1980s, but its future is presently unknown, despite several plans to convert the building to another function, including one abortive plan to make it into a hotel.
Taken today!







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Old October 28th, 2005, 02:46 AM   #2
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This really gets my tits in a twist. WHAT A ******* DISGRACE!
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Old October 28th, 2005, 02:54 AM   #3
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Can a compulsory Purchase Order not be made on this building?
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Old October 28th, 2005, 03:15 AM   #4
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Put a big glass roof put over that courtyard and it would make a fantastic place.

It doesn't look that bad from here jrb.
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Old October 28th, 2005, 06:03 AM   #5
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It's perfect for a hotel. Why don't they just get on with it?

Why I oughta....
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Old October 28th, 2005, 10:07 AM   #6
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This is a crime, one of the finest buildings in Manchester left to rot, nothing short of a ******* disgrace. Such a prime location too....
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Old October 28th, 2005, 11:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Farsight
Put a big glass roof put over that courtyard and it would make a fantastic place.

It doesn't look that bad from here jrb.
The pics don't show how bad it really is Farsight! Everything is either rotting away or rusting away! Basically its being used as a warehouse!

The Council have put pressure on the current owners to either repair the builing or sell it! Even the Civic Society have tried naming and shaming the owners! Unfortunatley nothing has worked so far!

Last edited by jrb; October 28th, 2005 at 11:14 AM.
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Old January 17th, 2006, 02:09 AM   #8
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Carried on from Sleepys original post in the Piccadilly Place thread.

There's ways and mean's!

Argent tunes up giant Manchester scheme

Former fire station in city centre to be redeveloped into leisure complex

Argent has teamed up with other developers to plan the redevelopment of a Manchester city centre site into an entertainment-led leisure and hotel complex.

Argent is leading the project to restore a former fire station on a prominent corner site opposite Piccadilly station.

The developer has sought the backing of Manchester City Council and its chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein, which has long wanted to redevelop the site.

Britannia hotels owner Alex Langsam owns the site. He was sent the plans before Christmas and the partnership is expected to begin talks with him this month.

Bernstein is understood to consider the site as being crucial to the ongoing regeneration of the area.

It is hoped that the land can be acquired from Langsam or worked on as part of a joint venture or tenancy agreement.

The council could also use its compulsory purchase powers for the site. Langsam has owned the land for more than five years.

There is a grade II-listed Edwardian former fire station on the site, which would be refurbished.

The plans also include a ‘world-class music venue’ in the centre of the site. The scheme will aim to become a home to fashionable music in the city.

Although Argent is heading the project, it will be brought under the banner of the Piccadilly Partnership, which is investing in a wider regeneration of the area.

The partnership wants to extend the range of uses in the area, which at present is largely commercial and residential. Others developers in the partnership are Albany Assets, Bruntwood, Inacity and BSC Group.

The council had originally favoured creating a residential or hotel scheme.

Langsam uses part of the building as offices and storage. The hotel owner, who features on the Times Rich List, was unavailable for comment as he was on holiday.

Argent and Bernstein were also unavailable for comment.

Last edited by jrb; January 17th, 2006 at 02:36 AM.
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Old January 17th, 2006, 02:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrb
Carried on from Sleepys original post in the Piccadilly Place thread.

Theres ways and means!

Argent tunes up giant Manchester scheme

Former fire station in city centre to be redeveloped into leisure complex

Argent has teamed up with other developers to plan the redevelopment of a Manchester city centre site into an entertainment-led leisure and hotel complex.

Argent is leading the project to restore a former fire station on a prominent corner site opposite Piccadilly station.

The developer has sought the backing of Manchester City Council and its chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein, which has long wanted to redevelop the site.

Britannia hotels owner Alex Langsam owns the site. He was sent the plans before Christmas and the partnership is expected to begin talks with him this month.

Bernstein is understood to consider the site as being crucial to the ongoing regeneration of the area.

It is hoped that the land can be acquired from Langsam or worked on as part of a joint venture or tenancy agreement.

The council could also use its compulsory purchase powers for the site. Langsam has owned the land for more than five years.
There is a grade II-listed Edwardian former fire station on the site, which would be refurbished.

The plans also include a ‘world-class music venue’ in the centre of the site. The scheme will aim to become a home to fashionable music in the city.

Although Argent is heading the project, it will be brought under the banner of the Piccadilly Partnership, which is investing in a wider regeneration of the area.

The partnership wants to extend the range of uses in the area, which at present is largely commercial and residential. Others developers in the partnership are Albany Assets, Bruntwood, Inacity and BSC Group.

The council had originally favoured creating a residential or hotel scheme.

Langsam uses part of the building as offices and storage. The hotel owner, who features on the Times Rich List, was unavailable for comment as he was on holiday.

Argent and Bernstein were also unavailable for comment.
Quote:
The plans also include a ‘world-class music venue’ in the centre of the site. The scheme will aim to become a home to fashionable music in the city.
Sounds very interesting! Manchester deserves a world class music venue/museum!

Quote:
The council could also use its compulsory purchase powers for the site. Langsam has owned the land for more than five years.
Langsam will have to do business! Either redevelope as a partner or sell!

Quote:
Albany Assets, Bruntwood, Inacity and BSC Group
So BSC are in with the big boys! Here's us thinking they were a Mickey Mouse outfit!
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Old January 18th, 2006, 12:02 AM   #10
Northbeach
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Hmm, I'm smelling a artsy courtyard here a la Convent Garden?
20 years ago, if this was in a disused state (which of course it wasn't then), this would have been raised to the ground.
There are a hell of a lot of hotels in this area now (Picc Place/Malmaison/Rosetti/Fire Station plan) - may they have an effect on the Eastgate dream?
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Old January 18th, 2006, 12:07 AM   #11
Bim
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I can't see the pictures
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Old January 18th, 2006, 01:13 AM   #12
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Me neither

Though I do pass the place often when I'm in the city and tend to have a peek through the gates to see the area and it's true it's in a really criminally dilapidated state.
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147 metres: so is this the height of Birmingham's ambitions? The city surely deserves better. Arena Central / Arena Square / V Building The incredible shrinking tower: 245m --> 187m --> 175m --> 152m --> 150m --> 147m --> 143m --> ???m
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Old January 18th, 2006, 01:24 AM   #13
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Here's an image from Aidan O'Rourke's archive.






This building occupies practically a whole city block (all be it triangular in shape). Im looking forward to finding out what these new proposals are.


This article was from September '05. Things have moved on a way in a short time.

Quote:
Restoration drama

09 September 2005




Edwardian fire station
The magnificent Edwardian fire station on a valuable site in Manchester city centre, currently used for storage




The former fire station on London Road in Manchester has been owned by hotel magnate and millionaire Alex Langsam for more than five years. The Edwardian building — with elaborate terracotta and brick mouldings on the large facade — is on a prominent corner site in Manchester, opposite the recently refurbished Piccadilly station.

The local council is privately concerned the prominent building is falling into disrepair and is frustrated that an 18-month-old agreement with the owner to fix damaged gutters, windows and terracotta tiles remains unfulfilled. The council is also worried the building will blight the area and undo the good done by the dramatic regeneration of the station across the road.

The council is tight-lipped about the neglect, but local heritage campaigners are able to speak more freely.

Former Manchester Civic Society chair Ray Makin said: “The Manchester Civic Society has campaigned for years to have something done with this. Any letter to the owner is just ignored. He is very thick-skinned. It is a tragedy because it is a lovely building and has been neglected for years.

“It is a horror. They have no reason to restore the building and are sitting watching the value of the land rise to ever-greater heights. Spending money on the building will not improve the value of the property. Because the owners are already hugely wealthy there is no pressure to make them do anything else.”

Parts of the large building are used for offices and storage space by the hotel chain owned by Langsam, Britannia Hotels.

Langsam, who is estimated by the Times Rich List to have a personal fortune of £62 million, was unavailable for comment, as he was on holiday. No one else at the company was prepared to talk about the building.

Last edited by SleepyOne; January 18th, 2006 at 01:46 AM.
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Old January 18th, 2006, 01:32 AM   #14
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Here's the MEN's take on the news.


Quote:
Fire station's cultural future


London Road Fire Station in Piccadilly

HOPES are mounting that a neglected Manchester landmark could be revived as a music, arts and cultural venue.

Developers Argent are understood to be working on plans for the 100-year-old former fire station at London Road.

Senior sources at Manchester city council have long hinted that the site, currently owned by Britannia Hotel proprietor Alex Langsam, must be included in the redevelopment of the Piccadilly area. Council officials have repeatedly refused to rule out the possibility of compulsory purchase if it remains unrefurbished.



Now they are understood to be working with Argent and other developers working on Piccadilly schemes to find a use for the building.

The city's chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein said "Inevitably there is a lot of press speculation about the future of the London Road Fire Station Building, and given the pace of change in the Piccadilly area, the future of the building is a priority for us. I can confirm that I have met the building's owner, Mr Alex Langsam, and that I am still in touch with him. It is not possible for me to say anything further."

The grade II listed fire station is included in English Heritage's register of "at risk" historic buildings.

Argent declined to comment on the plans.
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Old January 18th, 2006, 01:43 AM   #15
Bim
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Yeah i pass this building often on the 192...but even in the state it's in now, this building is of such high quality that it could never put a blot on the station opposite.
I'm gonna try and find some pics of the courtyard inside as i'm intrigued as to how it looks now.
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Old January 18th, 2006, 01:56 AM   #16
Martin G
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It's a commendable enough idea that they may consider turning it into a multi-purpose arts venue - I mean suddenly the whole name The Fire Station sounds rather nifty for an arts/theatre/music complex housed in a stylish old building, wouldn't you all agree? But as ever, talking about a revamp and redevelopment is one thing, actually having the resolve and determination - not to mention financial backing and incentive - to go about bringing it to fruition is another thing entirely.

Ultimately though, I find Langsam's apathetic laissez-faire attitude about this whole fiasco quite deplorable actually, considering the personal fortune which he has amassed. Does that man have a conscience at all?
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147 metres: so is this the height of Birmingham's ambitions? The city surely deserves better. Arena Central / Arena Square / V Building The incredible shrinking tower: 245m --> 187m --> 175m --> 152m --> 150m --> 147m --> 143m --> ???m
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Old January 18th, 2006, 04:19 AM   #17
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Imagine something like the Hearst Tower (New York) was built there. That'd be fab, using the Fire Station as it's grand entrance.
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Old January 18th, 2006, 03:46 PM   #18
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A glass roof and it sure would make a nice nightspot. Lights, music, thump thump thump. It could be really jumping.
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Old January 18th, 2006, 04:19 PM   #19
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If EH hadnt spent millions on pointless politically motivated court cases they could have helped secure the building for future generations to enjoy
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Old January 18th, 2006, 05:41 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgnr8
Imagine something like the Hearst Tower (New York) was built there. That'd be fab, using the Fire Station as it's grand entrance.
I was thinking exactly the same thing
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