UMIST commissioned stephenson STUDIO to refurbish 70-72 Sackville Street (1896 cotton warehouse) to house its maintenance workshops, estates department, commercial venture company and a public access computer facility.

The policy we pursued in trying to satisfy the brief was one of careful restoration coupled with clear contemporary expression where appropriate. As the existing planning of the building does not allow the flexibility of open plan offices and the inefficiency in its circulation, one stairwell (72) was demolished and installation of a new vertical circulation at the front of the building in order to satisfy the brief requirements and efficiency of the combined buildings.