MediaCityUK and The Quays

Office building on canal

The Quays is Greater Manchester's unique waterfront.

The redevelopment of Salford Quays has created a world-class business, cultural and residential area. More people now work at the Quays than in its heyday as a major seaport. Salford Quays has also become a popular residential area with a regular tram service to West Salford, Altrincham and Manchester city centre. The development of MediaCityUK will continue to build on the area's vibrant economy, fantastic leisure assets and high quality residential buildings.

Progress to date

Key milestones have included the opening of The Lowry in 2000, with its theatres, galleries, shops, bars, restaurant and conference facilities, along with the Digital World Centre and the Lowry Outlet Mall and leisure development.

The Quays has established itself as a tourist destination of choice with a wealth of world-class entertainment, sporting, leisure and cultural facilities.


MediaCityUK was designed to provide a purpose-built home for creative and digital businesses.

Centred around a waterfront public realm area twice the size of London's Trafalgar Square, MediaCityUK is a destination in its own right, complete with bars, cafés and restaurants. The development's piazza is designed to accommodate up to 5,000 people, making it a natural focal point both day and night.

MediaCityUK also houses one of the largest high definition studio facilities in Europe, featuring seven high definition television studios and two audio studios (one dedicated to the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra). 

Find out how to get to MediaCityUK.


A wide range of BBC broadcasts now come regularly from MediaCity including Blue Peter, Newsround, Mastermind, A Question of Sport, Match of the Day and Football Focus.


ITV completed the first phase of its move to MediaCityUK in 2013. Considered a flagship facility for the UK's biggest commercial programme provider, the Orange tower is now home to teams from CITV, Granada Reports, factual, entertainment, drama, post production, The Jeremy Kyle show and various business support services.

Coronation Street is now at filmed at MediaCity from a state-of-the-art production centre next to the Imperial War Museum North.

University of Salford

The University of Salford has a presence at MediaCityUK, with a brand new campus for more than 1,500 students and staff. Specialist courses, designed in conjunction with the BBC, equip students with the skills to help them access job opportunities on site.


The £70 million Soapworks development at Ordsall Riverside is already transforming the former Colgate Palmolive soap factory into a modern and dynamic centre for business, creativity and leisure.

Complementary to the MediaCityUK offer, the project is targeted at the digital and media sector and new business start-ups.

It is estimated that future re-development phases could deliver a further 1,200 jobs.


This exciting new commercial development will deliver 12 high quality hybrid business units providing 43,656sqft of floor space around a 30 metre central landscaped boulevard.  Led by Capital & Centric plc, the scheme could support up to 150 jobs. Capital & Centric secured £1.1million from the European Regional Development Fund.

Consultation with the Ordsall Community Forum informed the development of detailed design work and a full planning application was determined and approved by Salford City Council on 5 September 2013.

  • Delivery of this project will represent a major European funded scheme in Salford.
  • Development now complete
  • A critical component of the approved scheme is the creation of a high quality public realm link between Irwell River Park and Ordsall Hall.

HOST, Salford’s Home of Skills & Technology

Located in the south tower of the MediaCityUK studio block, HOST is a place where creativity and innovation can be nurtured and developed. It offers a range of services to help stimulate and support the growth of media companies and has been built around six defining themes:

  • advanced digital technologies
  • experimental and applied research
  • talent development
  • a convening space for meetings/conferences
  • professional skills development
  • flexible workspace

Salford City Council secured £3,775,321 funding to progress the project from the North West Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and a further £6,852,678 under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) which is managed in the northwest by the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Key stats

  • At Salford Quays in 2015, there were approximately 3,500 residents and 900 businesses supporting over 26,000 jobs– around 23,000 more jobs than were lost when Manchester Docks closed in 1982
  • The first phase of MediaCityUK offers 70,000 square feet of offices including space for the BBC, ITV and University of Salford and 250,000 square feet of high definition studios (including the largest high definition studio in Europe and one dedicated to the BBC Philharmonic)
  • Soapworks has delivered  2,000m² of new office floorspace in the Boilerhouse along with 50 new jobs. Blocks A, B and C will deliver 22,000m² of new office and mixed-use floorspace and around 1,720 new jobs. A further phase of 16,000m² with Block D will deliver a total of 38,000m² of new mixed-use floorspace within the former works
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