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120-meter residential towers instead of Manhattan. The city has a different plan

22 of May '24
w skrócie
  1. The owner of Manhattan wants to replace the existing mall with 120-meter high residential towers with services.
  2. Residents of Wrzeszcz are collecting signatures to protest the plans to build the high-rise towers and are calling for a zoning plan for the area.
  3. Manhattan, celebrating its 20th birthday this year, is one of the better-designed buildings of its kind in the Tri-City.
  4. As the A&B portal found, the City has adopted its own guidelines, limiting the height of future buildings on the Manhattan site to 30 meters and setting a 50 percent share of the residential function.
  5. Gdansk is preparing, including the Manhattan site, the Al. Grunwaldzka. The document is expected to be ready in June 2024 and will be the basis for further planning decisions.

  6. For more interesting information, visit the home page of the A&B portal.

Plans to demolish shopping malls to put up apartments in their place have reached Gdansk. On the Manhattan plot in Wrzeszcz, the investor dreams of 120-meter towers with 780 apartments and services. The people of Wrzeszcz are collecting signatures under protest and calling for a zoning plan for the plot. Meanwhile, the City has adopted its own assumptions, and there are many indications that the investor will have to get around the taste.

Manhattan was one of the first modern shopping centers in Gdansk. It opened in 2004, when only Alfa Centrum stood in Przymorze, and Madison stood in downtown Gdansk , on Rajska Street. And although in later years the number of "temples of commerce" in the capital of the Pomeranian Voivodeship began to increase, to this day the Manhattan in Wrzeszcz is regarded as one of the better designed shopping malls in the Tri-City. The transparent, openwork facade fits in well with the neighborhood. This is especially evident since Gdansk passed a landscape resolution, and ugly advertisements disappeared from the building. The project, which was prepared by Wojciech Targowski, Antoni Taraszkiewicz and Piotr Mazur, received an award from the Association of Polish Architects in 2004.

investor's debatable vision

The center was built on the site of demolished pre-war buildings and Karol Swierczewski Square, which was created in its place. In the 1990s commerce flourished here straight from the cars, which over time was somewhat civilized - pavilions and covered stalls were erected in the square. Today, next door stands the 55-meter-high Olympus, built in the late 1960s (also called the Dolarowiec), and - also 55 meters high - the not-so-successful Quattro Towers complex of four towers, whose construction ended in 2011.

In 2021 Manhattan fell into the hands of the Hungarian fund Futureal, and it quickly became apparent that the new owner was spinning revolutionary development plans. And since there is no local plan for the area, in June 2022 Cordia Managment Poland, a company belonging to the Futureal group, submitted an application to the Gdansk municipality to establish a high-intensity residential and commercial function for the plot. The investor dreams of a building of varying heights, up to 120 meters. The lower floors would house services, while the remaining floors would house apartments - a total of 780.

Wybudowane w 2004 r. centrum handlowe dobrze wpisało się w otoczenie

The shopping center, built in 2004, fits in well with its surroundings

photo: Ewa Karendys

Many residents reacted to such a proposal with dismay. It has nothing to do with creating a city for the people," believes Maciej Jacaszek, an architect who became involved in the residents' objection. - I have participated in many procedures for issuing zoning decisions, and I believe that it is not so easy to draw the conclusion that high-rise buildings can stand in the place of Manhattan. The neighboring Quattro Towers was built, in my opinion, on the basis of erroneous urban planning assumptions. Should we continue this direction? Absolutely not. The argument of the scale of the historic buildings on Jaskowa Dolina Street in favor of low-rise buildings should be the key argument.

concerns of wrzeszczans

In May, a group of residents initiated a letter opposing the investor's plans.

We do not agree with the changes, in which high-rise buildings are allowed, even on private property, changing the architectural fabric of our neighborhood, without broad public consultation. We make a motion to develop a zoning plan for Upper Wrzeszcz as soon as possible and to return to consultations with residents," the protesters wrote in a petition addressed to the Gdansk City Council.

Dominika Nowak-Król, a participant in the protest, stresses that the people of Wrzeszcz are not opposed to the construction of residential buildings.

On the contrary. On the other hand, the planning of new development should be done with respect for the history of the neighborhood, taking into account the consequences of the proposed changes and decent consultations with residents. Instead, we oppose aggressive development, the height proposed by the developer is unacceptable," she explains.

Residents are also concerned about the fate of the public library, located in the current Manhattan Shopping Center, which serves a community function.

This is one of the few social spaces in Wrzeszcz today that integrates residents of all ages," Dominika Nowak-Król points out.

Today, visions for new development at the site of Manhattan are being analyzed as part of the study being developed in Gdansk on the Grunwaldzka Avenue Strip (PAG), the city's main artery, where there is the greatest concentration of urban services and commerce. The document is to determine a common concept for the development of the band - stretching from Oliwa to the Aniołki district.

Wieże Quattro Towers, po prawej - fragment Dolarowca

Quattro Towers, on the right - a fragment of Dolarowiec

photo: Ewa Karendys

city cuts height

In the case of Manhattan, it turns out - and this is good news - the City does not intend to follow the investor's expectations blindly.

For further work on the PAG (including transportation analyses) for the Manhattan plot, the team has adopted as an assumption a height of up to 30 meters and only a 50 percent share of the residential function, says Joanna Bieganowska of the Gdansk City Hall.

We asked the developer for a comment on the matter, but by the time the article was published we had not received a response.

According to earlier announcements, the Grunwaldzka Avenue band study was supposed to be ready by April 2024, i.e. by the time of the local elections. However, this has not happened, and the next date indicated is June.

Manhattan is not the only location covered by the PAG where investors want to build high. In the Olivia Business Center complex, the investor is requesting to raise the parameters of the development - to 160 meters (today, for the so-called Olivia 9 building, it has a building permit for a 135-meter high development). A building of the same height - if it meets the investor's expectations - would also be built on the corner of Żołnierzy Wyklętych Avenue. Recorded in the Strzyża district, a 200-meter-high building would be erected on the site where the 10-meter-high City Meble retail pavilion stands today.

The study of the Grunwaldzka Avenue band will be the basis for further decisions, including those related to planning changes. Until the work is completed, investor applications and work on development plans for the area remain on hold.

Ewa Karendys

The vote has already been cast