City Football Academy, Manchester

Football, regeneration, community…

“Visionary. That’s the one word I’d use to describe the new City Football Academy (CFA) we’re building for Manchester City FC,” explains BAM’s Education and Community Co-ordinator Penny Anderson.

The CFA is a blueprint for a world-beating youth and elite player training centre, based on unprecedented research into thirty sports development facilities on five continents. 

Project details

  • Customer: Manchester City Football Club
  • Architect: Rafael Vinoly Architects
  • Quantity surveyor: Turner & Townsend
  • Project management: Christal Management
  • Structural engineer: Arup
  • M&E consultants: Wallace Whittle
  • Value: £87.9 million
  • Winner BITC North West Building Stronger Communities Award 2014
  • Winner National CSR Awards 2015, Best Community Development Project

View related projects

883 Fact icon contracts placed with local companies
70% Fact icon target for local recruitment and procurement on the project
£16,000 Fact icon worth of labour and materials donated to local projects
5.5 Fact icon acres of new community facilities being provided for local residents

World-class training

The goal is long-term sustainability: providing up to 400 young players with coaching, fitness, accommodation and education, on what used to be an overlooked and polluted 80 acre site.

The centre includes classrooms and accommodation for junior and senior players, 17 pitches (including a half-pitch for training goalkeepers), changing rooms, a gym, refectory and injury centre.

A 7,000 seat stadium will host youth matches, and features open plan offices and a media centre.

Rooted in the community

BAM has made a huge impact on local employment opportunities for young people with the Prince’s Trust Get Into Construction programme and the site’s visitor/employment centre. Over 1362 people received employment advice, support and sign posting through this resource, which delivered over 17,000 training hours.

The project surpassed all of their targets; an average of 62% of the workforce was from the local community, this peaked at 72%, and 93 people who gained employment on site had been previously unemployed. 883 contracts were placed with local companies, and 95 apprentices and trainees worked on site.

From wasteland to green oasis

As one local resident put it, the site “was a wasteland with no opportunities.”  The brownfield site posed significant challenges. But with our partners, BAM has constantly been aiming for the gold standard on carbon, waste and water management.

We cleaned and reused all polluted material on site, rather than taken to landfill. And planted more than 6,000 trees as part of the landscaping.

The opening of the new Academy marks the first stage in a broader regeneration of this once grim industrial landscape.