RTKL International Ltd.
One South Street
Baltimore, MD 21202
(t) 410-528-8600
(f) 410-385-2455
www.rtkl.com
Location:
Manchester, England
United Kingdom

Size: 550,000 sq. ft.

Category: New Centers
(400,000 sq. ft. - 1 million sq. ft.)

Firm: RTKL International Ltd.

Developer/Owner:
The Printworks Leisure Scheme Trust Fund

The Printworks -- a new district complete with bars, cafes, restaurants, retail outlets and a health complex -- evokes a neighborhood of winding streets and storefronts. In addition, the project uniquely solves the design problem of how to place a multi-tenanted entertainment center onto an urban site. Density of development was achieved by eliminating the upper and lower-level walkways adopted by conventional "malls." Instead, visitors circulate exclusively at the ground level, creating a constant urban buzz.

The Printworks retains all the original window openings of the facade from the building that was demolished on the site. This ensures that the building's exterior is not the typical blank box that has come to be associated with urban entertainment centers. The brick and glass areas of the faade are dramatically lit by thousands of fluorescent tubes with colored sleeves behind the glass part of the facade, a lighting treatment which has become one of the most emblematic images of The Printworks.

The use of faux, look-alike, or otherwise artificial materials was rejected in favor of real materials -- brick, stone, metal and wood -- used throughout the entire length of the new street. The result is a city center development that incorporates quality civic space, lighting and amenities.

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