Updated: Sunday, 19th November 2017 @ 8:06am

The Cornerhouse on the move

The Cornerhouse on the move

By Jack Titley

The Cornerhouse cinema is set to move into a new £19m venue on First Street in the city centre after council proposals last Thursday.

The major arts shake-up was debated by Manchester City Council’s executive, the Cornerhouse will move to new premises next to the former Hacienda building on Whitworth Street West.

The new venue, estimated to cost £19 million, could open during spring 2014 and will also host a new gallery and outdoor performance space while the number of cinema screens will increase from three to five.

Dave Moutrey, chief executive of the Cornerhouse, said:  “It's an amazing opportunity for the venue and another great example of how Manchester thinks outside the box and keeps the urban regeneration going.”

Mr Moutrey said: “It’s a great opportunity for us to share resources and creative ideas with the Library Theatre and I know my equivalent there, Chris Horner, feels the same.

“It’s a first and it will bring together two arts organisations all tooled up digitally - and, of course, we both have a massive commitment to education and community outreach.”

The venue has come under funding pressure along with the Halle Orchestra and the Contact Theatre as a result of government spending cuts on arts funding bodies and local councils.

He added: “We hope to create a new iconic building. The current one is quirky but far from ideal. And the move also means an opportunity to be more entrepreneurial.”

No decisions had been made on a new name yet for the venture and that the first priority was look at how the business model stacked up.

Chris Horner, the venue’s Artistic Director, said the revised proposals were terrific news for local audiences and the group.

Mr Horner said: “It will enable the company to develop and expand its work and achieve its aspirations.”

As news of the move rippled across Manchester last week, former Urbis staff were already speculating on Twitter about what would happen to the existing Cornerhouse site.

There was a trending topic onwhether it might become a home for the promised Urbis 2 exhibition space which closed earlier this year in order to house the National Football Museum.