Avenue North & Tower 12

Improvement works for Manchester’s entertainment quarter


PPF Real Estate (through CBRE Workspace)


Manchester city centre



Having already delivered several projects on the Spinningfields estate, Urbanise was asked to return to carry out groundworks and roofing works on Avenue North and Tower 12 respectively. We worked in4m Property Consultants to deliver the project.

New drainage and waterproofing 

Avenue North is a small walkway, lined with offices, bars and restaurants, that connects Bridge Street and Wood Street in Spinningfields. Following drainage issues, we were instructed to remove the existing granite paving slabs and substate, install a new waterproof membrane and replace the existing slot drainage system before reinstating the paving on completion. 

When we started removing the existing paving, we discovered some underlying issues, such as unexpected voids, increased depths of polystyrene void formers and soft spots in the substrate. We resolved this by engaging with a structural engineer to come up with new reinforced concrete slab proposals that allowed us to apply the new waterproofing system. 

From ground to roof 

Alongside the groundworks, we were asked to strip the existing roof, fit insulation and install a single ply roof on Tower 12, a 12-storey office building located on Avenue North. Following the completion of the roof replacement, we installed a mansafe system to enable safe access to the roof for ongoing maintenance, which will extend the longevity of the asset. 

Project challenges 

Spinningfields is Manchester’s financial centre and a vibrant destination for dining, shopping and events. With a high daily footfall of workers and visitors, it always presents a logistical challenge for carrying out construction works.  

This was particularly difficult for Avenue North, which is a busy thoroughfare for pedestrians and is the only entrance for several businesses. We managed this by completing the works on a phased basis to ensure all the business premises remained operational and accessible at all times. We regularly communicated with the Spinningfields estate team and business operators to ensure that they were kept up to date and made aware of any potential issues or changes to the construction programme.  

Space also posed a problem, with very little room for storage, plant and machinery for both elements of the works. To combat this, we phased the removal and delivery of materials, so we only had to store a minimal amount on site at any time. 

Improving Manchester’s popular social spot 

Despite the logistical challenges, we were delighted to deliver the project on time and to budget, while enabling the busy Spinningfields neighbourhood and its occupiers to operate as usual throughout. 

"Urbanise took on the challenging resurfacing and waterproofing works to The Avenue with enthusiasm, and expertly dealt with the many and varied challenges it presented.

The nature of the project meant an adaptable approach was required as the works progressed, to deal with difficult logistics, detailing issues, hidden defects, and very poor weather.

Always keen to find solutions rather than highlight problems, the works were extremely well managed and executed, thereby curing a longstanding water ingress issue to the basement below, and providing a high quality paved finish to The Avenue."

Angela Seddon, Director, in4m