An architectural competition to design the £19m building will be launched by Manchester City Council next year. Funding is in place and it is hoped that the new facility will open in spring 2014.
The site will include five cinemas, gallery space, a 500-seat theatre, educational facilities and an outdoor performance space.
It is hoped that the new cultural destination, which will be located on Manchester’s First Street, will regenerate the 8ha site and will include 381 000m2 of retail and commercial floor space.
Manchester City Council executive member for culture and leisure Mike Amesbury says, ‘At a time when the arts world is experiencing many cuts, it’s fantastic that Manchester is leading the way by investing in our cultural economy.’