Glazed design echoes force's ethos of 'open policing'
The new Divisional Headquarters for North Manchester Police designed by Aedas brings together custodial, administrative, operation and strategic policing functions to a single building.
The Divisional Headquarters responds architecturally to the adjacent Force HQ, also by Aedas,whilst havinga very differently form and function. Both buildings utilise anodised curtain walling framing, glass, and white precast concrete, but whilst the rigid repeating panels react to the scale and corporate nature of the Force HQ building, the Divisional HQ has a more flowing aesthetic of solid overlapping concrete frames in filled with continuous full height glazing.
One of the challenges in the external design wasto tie the single storey custody units together with the 4 storey office to a coherent whole. This was successfully achieved by wrapping the office accommodation round two of the custody suite elevations, providing a secure shrouding, and using a tiered massing arrangement to the south and west elevations ensuring that the building composition remains balanced and articulated from each aspect.
Open plan office space is provided within each floor plate supporting GMPs new flexible working arrangements and promoting the communication and responsiveness that police work necessitates.
A variety of social spaces and experiences are provided throughout the building. A double height internal street with a glazed roof runs through the centre of the ground floor plan, separating the office and custodial functions and providing the main circulation routes between the cores and entrance areas. Small breakout spaces are provided within the open plan offices areas and the third floor contains a dining area / social space, a large external terrace and a gymnasium. An external landscaped breakout space is also provided at ground level.
Greater Manchester Police believe that the new building represents the 'open policing' ethos of the force in relation to its public portrayal and transparency, and will have a positive impact on the workforce within.
Chief Superintendent Russ Jackson said: "The building has been extremely well thought through and my colleagues and I feel very privileged to be its first tenants."