Manchester Metropolitan University and Morgan Sindall Construction win trio of awards for new Arts and Humanities building

Manchester Metropolitan University’s new Arts and Humanities building has scooped a trio of awards for both the University and lead contractor Morgan Sindall Construction.

The building, now completed, was recognised at this year’s Constructing Excellence North West Regional Construction Awards, held in a virtual ceremony on November 26th.

The project is the result of a collaborative, one team approach from the University and Morgan Sindall Construction together with Turner and Townsend (professional services), Allies and Morrison (architects) and Arup (engineering). Charcoalblue and Drama by Design both served as theatre consultants.
Situated in a prime location on the Oxford Road Corridor, this modern building creates an inspirational venue for training the next generation of actors, writers, journalists and linguists.

Its trio of awards included the Sub-Regional Project of the Year for Manchester and then went through to the overall Project of the Year category as a result, where it was highly commended. Judges were impressed by the unique achievements of the design and build team, including the retention of the Grade II listed portico of the Grosvenor Building, and the undertaking of a complex construction project within the confines of a live campus and city centre environment.

The University was then awarded Client of the Year and was praised for its collaborative approach in making the building project a success.

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The final project win was the Digital Construction Project of the Year award. This recognised the use of cutting-edge technology that delivered a fully collaborative design process and helped to optimise logistics and buildability, enhance health, safety and quality while also reducing waste.

Shaun Jones, area director for Morgan Sindall Construction in Manchester, said: “We’re very proud that the Arts and Humanities building has been recognised at these awards. Manchester Metropolitan University has been a fantastic client, and the success of the project reflects the excellent relationship we developed during the course of delivery.

“Building this landmark new facility within the constraints of both a university campus and one of the busiest streets in the city presented a range of challenges. However, through a commitment to collaboration and the use of cutting edge digital construction we were able to deliver a fabulous new building that will be a wonderful learning environment for students, as well as a visually striking addition to the Oxford Road Corridor.”

Mike Sheppard, Director of Estates and Capital Development at Manchester Metropolitan, said: “It is great to see the new Arts and Humanities Building praised at the North West Regional Construction awards. We are pleased that the University’s Estates Masterplan is recognised in this way as we continue to develop a world-class campus.

“The Arts and Humanities building has sensitively brought the old and the new together to create a truly modern space that will provide unrivalled settings for culture, learning and research – right in the heart of Manchester.
“Congratulations to Morgan Sindall Construction, its project partners and the supply chain that helped deliver this project.”

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The new Arts and Humanities building will be home to the Manchester Poetry Library alongside the prestigious Manchester Writing School – led by Creative Director Professor Carol Ann Duffy DBE – as well as a 180-seat auditorium for Manchester School of Theatre productions, an exciting new Multimedia Journalism programme with in-house TV and radio studios, and the Language Centre.

This six story structure is connected to the Grade-II listed Grosvenor building – home to The Holden Gallery – and provides space to exhibit items from the University’s vast Special Collections.

  • For more information about this news release please contact Tom Carlin at Influential on 07827 957740 or email

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