The MA Architecture + Urbanism course is the Manchester School of Architecture's taught postgraduate course which conducts research into how global cultural and economic forces influence contemporary cities. The design, functioning and future of urban situations is explored in written, drawn and modelled work which builds on the legacy of twentieth century urban theory and is directed towards the development of sustainable cities.

Wednesday 15 October 2014

Architecture + Urbanism recommends 'SAVE LIBRARY WALK PUBLIC INQUIRY'

The Library Walk PUBLIC INQUIRY takes place at The Council Chamber in Manchester Town Hall 10am October 21st & 22nd and is open for the public to attend – please join us to show the strength of our opposition!
Background information is at

On October 21st campaigners battling to preserve one of Manchester’s most unique walkways will present a dossier of evidence challenging Council plans to close Library Walk. The Planning Inspectorate has called a Public Inquiry in response to hundreds of objections from people who want to preserve the right to walk the streets of our city, and to ensure they are accessible for disabled people.

Library Walk is a pedestrian area between St. Peter’s Square and Mount Street in Manchester city centre. Its distinctive curved shape is formed by Grade-II* listed buildings Manchester Central Library and the Town Hall Extension, both created by the celebrated architect E. Vincent Harris in the 1930s. Ian Simpson Architects designed the glass and metal “link” building which has been erected in the space, despite widespread public opposition and its absence from original plans and public consultation on the transformation of St Peter's Square.

Morag Rose, Spokesperson for Friends of Library Walk says

“We are fundamentally opposed to the closure of public space. We believe everyone should have the right to enjoy our cities streets. Library Walk is beautiful, and of significant architectural merit. We have testimonies from 100s of people who love and cherish it and want to preserve the right of way for future generations. The Council has only spurious arguments, we believe our evidence can successfully challenge every one of them. The closure sets a terrible precedent which blights the cityscape and wastes £3.5million which could have been used to significantly improve the public realm instead of stealing it.”

Author and journalist Owen Hatherley has voiced support, saying

“Library Walk is not only an extraordinary architectural space, an effortless transition between a classical library and a gothic town hall, it is also an extraordinary public space, free, atmospheric and wholly unique, in a city which has been lately intent on privatising and filling in all free spaces. In between these two masterpieces of public provision, to shove pointlessly this stunted black glass stub is inexplicable and inexcusable. A council that is – rightly – proud of these buildings should not be reversing the public-spiritedness that lay behind them in the first place”.

Witnesses who will be speaking at the Inquiry include representatives from The Open Spaces Society, Manchester and Warrington Quakers, The Twentieth Century Society, Manchester School of Architecture, Manchester Disabled People’s Access Group, Liverpool School of Architecture, Manchester Modernist Society and Friends of Library Walk as well as concerned citizens and experts in planning, architecture, Manchester history and urban space.

1 comment:

  1. Your articles don’t beat about the bushes these are actually exact t to the purpose.


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