Bridgewater Hall Basin, just off The Rochdale Canal, has been improved with the addition of planted islands, the second phase of a partnership programme to improve the green and blue parts of the city centre. City Centre Councillors lobbied for funding through the Clean City Fund to breath life in to this underused basin next to Bridgewater Hall.
A partnership between designers BDP, The National Trust, Biomatrix Water and Manchester City Council have created a series of active floating islands. The design and planting takes inspiration from the immediacy of Bridgewater Hall, it’s music and reflected colours. Many of the plants will provide a food source for bees, insects, birds, bats, fish and other wildlife. Under water the islands have artificial “roots” to encourage fish spawning and bacterial grown which will improve water quality and reduce pollution..
Supporting and helping to deliver the project was the City Centre Community group: Friends of Rochdale 9 (FoR9). This group in partnership with the Canal and River Trust was set up two years ago with support from City Centre Councillors to create a volunteer team to look after the canal and 9 locks along the Rochdale Canal from Piccadilly Basin to Castlefield Basin. They meet to clean and green the canal route every second Sunday of the month. Volunteers from the group along with City Council staff helped plant and then launch the floating islands. The group will help with the on going maintenance although another feature of the design was to make the islands accessible for cleaning and ensure there are no rubbish trap points.
Already installed, also funded by the Clean City Fund and supported by local Councillors are similar planting schemes along sections of the Rochdale canal on Canal Street and between Princess Street and Oxford Road.
Key to the project is Jon Stopp, who manages the volunteer group. He said: "its great to be involved in projects which liven up the waterspace in the city centre, makes it a more pleasing and relaxing place to be and improve wildlife habitats- imagine kingfishers and heron in city more often.”
Local Councillor Joan Davies was at the launch and welcomed the project: “It’s great to see a community group we have helped set up be at the forefront of this project. We have been able to access Clean City Funds, from our share of airport profits, to get this going and I want to see more projects like this that benefit city centre residents and visitors.”
Local resident and volunteer, William Jeavons said: “Coming along each month to clean and help maintain the canal is good fun and offers a way for me to improve where I live. I didn’t want to miss the chance of helping to plant and launch the islands. It’s good to see Manchester City Council investing in the greening of our city canals and supporting its heritage.”
Work has now begun on a major improvement plan to Piccadilly Gardens, starting with the repair of the fountain.Read more
Manchester City Council's new City Centre Strategy debated by councillors at the Economy scrutiny committee.
The strategy sets out the council's long term ambitions for the city centre and follows a period of consultation with councillors, residents and other stakeholders.Read more
Plans recognising the potential of Manchester's parks as crucial assets at the heart of their communities were examined at a scrutiny meeting this week.
Manchester's emerging Parks Strategy will be designed with a focus on the needs of communities - and on how local people can become more involved.Read more
Councillors are calling for volunteers to help build our innovative new 'floating islands' which will be brightening up Bridgewater Basin this spring.Read more
Councillor Joan Davies launching the rollout of 700 new bins last year
Nearly 3,000 people who have been caught dropping litter in Manchester city centre have been issued with on the spot fines a year on from the start of a major crackdown introduced by councillors.Read more
Latest figures show Manchester City Council’s carbon emissions have decreased by 13% over the last five years.
The figures show that the amount of carbon produced has decreased since the launch of ambitious plans to slash emissions across the city.Read more
Thousands of litterbugs have been given on-the-spot fines, and dozens left with criminal records, as part of our continued crackdown on littering.
Around 2,200 people have now been given fines since a team of city-centre litter busters starting work at the end of last year.Read more
Dig the City returns this summer to turn the city centre into a floral wonderland!Read more
A new system providing environmentally friendly heat and power to buildings in the heart of the city centre has taken a step forward that will make a significant contribution to reducing Manchester’s carbon emissions.
Detailed plans are now being considered for the creation of a Civic Quarter Heat Network, the first project of its kind in the city, and it is hoped that construction can begin next summer.Read more