It’s hoped the planned mobility hub in Ancoats will provide greater flexibility to residents leasing housing in the area by providing access to electric vehicles as well as car park spaces.
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A planning application for an urban mobility hub in Ancoats has been submitted, which would see cycle spaces complete withs showers and an electric car club brought to the Manchester neighbourhood. The planned hub is a joint venture between Manchester City Council and Manchester Life, a housing company part-owned by Manchester City owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
From the end of 2023, the Ancoats Mobility Hub would operate as a shared facility to ensure Ancoats grows as a ‘people first’ neighbourhood that prioritises streets for people over vehicles and provides sustainable and shared mobility choices.
Those behind the mobility hub say the streets and public space across the neighbourhood will immediately become cleaner and safer as on-street parking is removed and vehicle movements across the area are reduced.
The Hub will encourage the shift away from petrol and diesel cars and remove the need for private parking within future developments, enabling designers to focus on creating places for people to relax and enjoy.
It’s hoped the Hub will also break the traditional link between residential leases and car parking leases, allowing residents to acquire and relinquish a right to a parking space as their circumstances change. Manchester Life says this flexibility ensures access to parking is not a barrier for residents to stay in the neighbourhood as their housing and mobility needs change, such as when starting a family.
In addition, a neighbourhood delivery depot will reduce the increase in vehicle movements caused by online ordering. It will receive local deliveries and parcels, which will then be collected by residents or taken to individual developments via small electric vans or cargo bikes.
Other community facilities will include a commercial unit which will be prioritised for a community and cycle repair café adjacent to Ancoats Green, and 150 secure cycle parking spaces with changing facilities for public use.
“The Hub is a UK first. Anyone who thinks this is ‘just another car park’ is massively missing the point,” said Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council.
“The purpose of a car park is to park cars. The purpose of the Hub is to help transform the neighbourhood over time, pioneering new ways of getting around and encouraging people to choose greener and healthier transport options. This is about thinking and acting differently.
“We have to recognise that many people who choose to live in the city centre require cars for their daily life and work. But we do want to be very deliberate in making sustainable transport changes easier and more attractive – encouraging the use of electric vehicles, cycles and other forms of active travel while supporting the transition away from petrol and diesel.”
“As a place maker and developer, it is critical that Manchester Life responds to the future needs of the neighbourhood. We took this approach when we formed Manchester Life in 2014, and the neighbourhood has since become an incredible community brought to life by its people and businesses,” added Marty Edelman, Executive Chairman of Manchester Life.
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