It’s been a while since I went for a walk just for the sake of it. Broken ankles and recreational walking are not good friends. It’s had a detrimental effect on this blog. Anything I have blogged recently has been as a result of doing something that I have needed to do. But Gary, my physio at Wythenshawe Hospital, wants me to get as much exercise as possible without causing too much crippling pain. The more exercise I do the quicker I will recover I’m told.

So, as it was a sunny, cold January morning here so I decided on a little wander. I was walking about for about 3 hours so, as I’m a slower than normal, I think that was about four or five miles around the city centre. Then my foot decided it had enough and it was time to  catch the tram home.

I started by getting off the tram at St. Peter’s Square. There was a fashion shoot going on. A very attractive model was trying to look effortlessly cool in some beautiful but flimsy clothes quite unsuitable for a cold, Manchester, January morning while another woman with an impressive looking camera took pictures. They were using the columns of the portico of Central Library looking good in the bright sunshine.

I walked down Oxford Street towards the universities. There was something I heard about that I wanted to see down there.  That will be another post though. Since I was last here two construction cranes have appeared in the impressive hole where the old Odeon Cinema used to be. Apart from these it looked much the same as when I was last here. I’ve noticed that, with new buildings, they take ages getting the foundations right and connecting up the services, then the building shoots up. The presence of the cranes tell us that this is about to happen.

The building will be another office block complimenting No 1 and No 2 St. Peter’s Square and will be called Landmark. A bit of a presumptuous name, I feel, in a part of the city that contains the likes of the Midland Hotel, Central Library and the Town Hall. Here’s what it will look like.

Further along Oxford Road , it stops being a ‘street’ and becomes a ‘road’ just past the Palace Hotel on the corner of Whitworth Street, there was evidence of lots of activity on the former BBC site. At the back they have nearly finished the VITA student accommodation buildings. Older readers might have a certain idea of what student accomdation looks like. Forget them, these buildings are for the kind of students who have rich daddies and mummies who are prepared to pay a lot of money to keep their little darlings in the style to which they are accustomed. Not sure what they are like inside but they look a bit ‘grey’ on the outside. Just about bearable on a bright, sunny day but can’t see them being things of beauty on a grey sky, Manchester day. I love my city but we do have a lot of grey days. They are at the stage where they are putting the foundations in for all the office and apartment blocks on the Oxford Road side, plus yet another new tower. It’s called Circle Square. At the centre of the development there will be a square. Plans show it’s not a circle or a square but a rectangle. Go figure.

Here’s what they will look like. The façades look a lot more attractive than the VITA buildings. If you are big company or spending silly amounts of money on an apartment here you’ll be wanting it to look as good on the outside as they are on the inside. 

« »