OMI Architects

OMI Architects has been around since 1993 and the firm is one of the leading design-led practices in the North West. Architect Directors, McCall, James, Berry and O’Dwyer head up the practice’s 16 strong team of architects and graduates, all of whom are based in the former ‘Manchester Baths’, a RIBA Award-winning conversion of a Victorian swimming pool, where OMI has created a number of studios for the creative industries.

After only a few years in practice, OMI featured in the Architecture Foundation’s Publication ‘New Architects – A Guide to Britain’s Best Young Architectural Practices’. OMI has gone on to attract critical acclaim, with much of its work published in the architectural press. The quality of its work has also been recognised with a series of awards for design excellence including 11 national and regional RIBA Awards. OMI is known for a broad range of work including residential, museums and galleries, offices, churches, education, hotels, leisure, community and public buildings, many of which are within sensitive historic settings. In addition to its architecture output, the practice undertakes Feasibility Studies, Masterplanning, Interior Architecture, Design Guides, Graphics and Community Consultation.

The residential work ranges from large-scale city centre apartment schemes to affordable housing in some of the region’s most challenging communities. OMI has also developed expertise in specialist care provision for adults with complex needs. At Hulme, in Manchester, OMI were amongst the first architects to apply dense urban planning strategies to large-scale affordable inner-city residential schemes. Design principles were established at Hulme that have since become recognised as basic good practice for urban residential development throughout the UK. To date, OMI has built nearly 4000 homes and its recently completed Manchester apartment schemes at Greengate, Alto and Wilburn Wharf are now making their mark on the City’s skyline.

OMI cut its teeth on radical conversions of some of Manchester’s most important redundant heritage assets including Duke’s 92 and the Peoples History Museum. OMI has since moved on to complex heritage schemes involving some of the region’s most important Grade I and Grade II* Listed buildings, including All Souls, Bolton, which was named as RICS North West Building of the year in 2015. OMI’s projects have attracted nearly £30m in funding from public bodies such as the Heritage Lottery Fund and Arts Council England.

When working with existing buildings, OMI achieve harmony and balance between the new and the old, injecting life into what are often tired structures that have lost their way. OMI combine a real sense of interaction, delight and fun, whilst still respecting the dignity of the buildings and places that they engage with.

In all its work OMI seek out the ingredients that make the difference between a successful building or place that has spirit and life and one that suffers from being soulless and alien to the people that use it.

2018
BCO Awards - Refurbished/Recycled Workplace
Shortlisted
2017
Lincoln Good Design Outstanding Project Award
Winner
Lincoln Good Design Best Commercial Project Award
Winner
Insider Urban Residential and PRS Development of the Year
Winner
OMI Architects
Insider Architect of the Year
Shortlisted
2016
Phil O'Dwyer
Manchester Society of Architects Fellowship Award
Winner
2015
Civic Voice Conservation Award
Winner
RICS North West Project of the Year
Winner
RICS North West Community Award
Winner
RICS North West Design Through Innovation Award
Winner
RICS North West Conservation Award
Winner
Manchester Society of Architects Client Legacy Award
Winner
Civic Trust Regional Award
Winner
Architects' Journal Retrofit Award
Shortlisted
National Churches Trust Award
Shortlisted
Civic Trust Award
Shortlisted
RIBA North West Award
Shortlisted
Manchester Society of Architects Built Residential Scheme Award
Winner
RIBA Wales Award
Shortlisted
2014
Civic Trust Award
Commendation
BALI National Landscape Restoration & Regeneration Awards
Winner
Manchester Society of Architects Conservation Award
Winner
2013
RIBA North West Award
Winner
Manchester Society of Architects Award
Winner
Housing Design Award
Winner
RIBA East Midlands Award
Shortlisted
2012
First Time Buyer Magazine Best Small Development Award
Winner
Bridge of Discovery - Architects' Journal Small Projects
Commendation
2011
RIBA Award
Winner
2010
RIBA Regional Award
Winner
RIBA East Midlands Low Carbon Award
Winner
Manchester Society of Architects Award
Winner
CABE Building for Life
Gold Standard
Manchester Society of Architects Award
Winner
2009
Manchester Evening News Property Awards Best Apartment of the Year
Winner
2007
Housing Design Award
Winner
2005
RIBA Award
Winner
2004
RIBA Inclusive Design Award
Shortlisted
British Council for Offices Award
Winner
2003
RIBA Award
Winner
RIBA White Rose Design Award
Winner
Roses Design Award
Winner
Manchester Society of Architects Award
Winner
2001
Roses Design Awards
Commendation
Manchester Society of Architects Award
Winner
2000
Civic Trust Awards
Mention
Manchester Society of Architects Award
Winner
1999
1998
RIBA Award
Winner
1995
RIBA Housing Design Award
Winner
1994
RIBA Housing Design Award
Winner
OMI Architects

Jay Mistry

Architect

VCard

Phil O'Dwyer

Consultant

VCard

Adam Gray

Senior Associate Architect

VCard

Erin Towsley

Architect

VCard

Andy James

Director

VCard

Sally Davis

Admin

VCard

Dave McCall

Director

VCard

Stuart McGrath

Associate Architect

VCard

Aaron Coey

Associate Architect, Graphics & Communications

VCard

Philip Etchells

Architect

VCard

Nick Berry

Director

VCard

Heather Davis

Office Manager

VCard

Flora Hodson

Designer

VCard

Jonathan Woodward

Architect

VCard

Chris Wells

Part II Architectural Assistant

VCard

Kathryn Valentine

Architect

VCard

Finn Reece-Thomas

Part I Architectural Assistant

VCard

Hannah Cruickshank

Part I Architectural Assistant

VCard

Scott Chenery

Architect

VCard
Wellington Rooms Ballroom

WELLINGTON ROOMS, LIVERPOOL

It was a busy consultation event on the 21st of March to showcase our initial thoughts on the future of the Wellington Rooms, a Grade II* listed former assembly rooms building in Liverpool.

There were a variety of options on display with a developed preferred option of an Innovation and Enterprise hub, to provide commercial uses focused upon smaller business operators and to provide a link between the existing Science Park, University and other Knowledge Quarter uses.

This involves providing an entrance/exhibition area, with a business hub and café and a rear multi-function event space in the Ballroom. To the upper floor the accommodation provides a multipurpose function/meeting room with a second floor providing additional cellular offices.

GREATER MANCHESTER FIRE SERVICE MUSEUM SUBMITTED FOR HLF STAGE 2 FUNDING

Our plans for the Greater Manchester Fire Service (GMFS) Museum, Rochdale have been submitted for Stage 2 Heritage Lottery Funding (HLF).

The proposal will provide a permanent new home for the impressive collection of fire service memorabilia within the Malcure Road Fire Station. The reworked building will allow for the expansion and development of the museum whilst also securing the long-term future of the building, which has been vacant since 2014 and has fallen into minor disrepair.

The GMFS Museum has been open since 1983, staffed entirely by a team of volunteers from within the fire service. The current home of the exhibition is within an old maintenance workshop, across the yard from the fire station. The proposed scheme will create an outward and forward looking museum which will make the best use of the historic building whilst interpreting the varied collection.

Birtenshaw School

BIRTENSHAW SCHOOL SUBMITTED FOR PLANNING

The application has been made on behalf of Birtenshaw, a charity that provides a unique range of services for children and young adults with special educational needs and disability across the North West.

The proposal will provide additional facilities for Birtenshaw School to educate children with severe learning disability, Autistic Spectrum Conditions, significant physical impairment and/or complex health needs and an early years service.

The scheme is comprised of 10 classroom suites, therapy accommodation, staff facilities, a hydrotherapy pool (including changing facilities) and a dining/sports hall, all arranged around a central landscaped sensory courtyard.

The new building is designed as a safe, secure, welcoming and supportive environment and will have a secluded and attractive layout with a positive focus on pupils within their teaching and therapy/play environments. The architectural design will also provide a therapeutic benefit: natural light, ventilation, space and outdoor amenity will be carefully controlled to produce a setting where pupils, carers and teachers feel valued.

31 Booth Street

31 BOOTH STREET SHORTLISTED FOR A NORTHERN BCO AWARD

The BCO Awards (British Council for Offices) highlight excellence in the design of office space. The awards programme provides recognition for top quality design and a benchmark for excellence in workplaces.

Our work to the Grade 2 listed office building achieves a distinctive change through a series of bold interventions that focus on how people enter and circulate within the building whilst also upgrading the office spaces themselves. To announce this transformation a previously blocked up historic archway on Booth St was opened up to form a new building entrance and a high quality bronze entrance doorway and canopy inserted signifying the internal changes and leading into a radically reordered ground floor layout. On entering the building at street level a series of double height spaces reveal views into the first floor offices above and creates a large and impressive volume that belies the building relatively modest scale.

The building provides fully refurbished and improved office accommodation and these offices are supported by upgraded facilities including full air conditioning, new WC layouts, showers and cycle storage.

TRINITY COURT TRANSFORMATION GRANTED APPROVAL

Our transformation of Trinity Court in Manchester City Centre has been granted planning approval.

The existing 9 storey office building on John Dalton Street, is situated within the Albert Square Conservation Area. The building was comprehensively redeveloped in the early 1990s with only the original 19th century facade being retained.

The approved works include a full refurbishment and internal reordering, to bring Trinity Court up to modern office standards. These alterations include a new entrance and foyer at street level, new rooftop extension and a comprehensive remodelling of the internal office accommodation.

The project will start on site January 2018.

MANCHESTER CENTRAL 16-17 NOVEMBER

OMI are attending this year’s Museums Association Conference.

Please come along to meet our team on stand 4a. Find out more about our ongoing museum work and see some of the exhibits from the Rochdale Fire Service Museum. Visitors to the stand will be able to preview our design approach and find out how OMI can help realise your project vision.

If you would like to arrange a meeting with a member of the team, please contact Andy James or Aaron Coey:

Andy James, Director: andy.james@omiarchitects.com
Aaron Coey, Associate: aaron.coey@omiarchitects.com

PLANS APPROVED FOR £3.5M EXPANSION OF BAND ON THE WALL

Today Manchester City Council has approved plans for the expansion of the historic Band on the Wall venue, including bringing the derelict Cocozza building, at the rear of the existing Band on the Wall, back to life.

The plans will see the multiple award-winning venue’s capacity increase from 350 to 500 for headline artists and performances. The Picturehouse Bar will be re-modelled with the external terrace space increased and a new commercial kitchen installed. A learning complex will include a rooftop A/V suite, allowing young people and education participants to create new digital work by engaging with international touring artists.

The Cocozza building is one of only a few remaining structures from the days of the Victorian Smithfield Market. The inclusion of the Cocozza building creates a new opportunities along Foundry Street and it is planned to install digital artworks in place of venue windows.

Second-stage funding will now be sought from Arts Council England.

WORK REACHES LEVEL 26 OF 44

The intended ‘shimmer’ is now visible as the sun moves around the building. The seamless glazed curtain walling system includes gold coloured reflective metal cladding panels set behind the glass at a variety of angles to give the effect. Work is also progressing on the lower level brick faced elements which will knit the building into the existing context.

OMI SELECTED FOR ROCHDALE FIRE STATION TRANSFORMATION

Following a competitive selection process OMI Architects’ team have been selected to advance the Greater Manchester Fire Service Museum project to an HLF Stage II submission. Key stakeholders in the project include Rochdale Council and Greater Manchester Fire Service Museum Trust.

The project will restore and adapt the 1930s Art Deco Mulcure Road fire station to create a fully accessible museum with new visitor services and a café. The project will provide a permanent home for the Greater Manchester Fire Service Museum collection and archive. This coupled with a lively engagement programme will bring the collection to hard-to-reach audiences, young people and the local community.

OMI SHORTLISTED TO DEVELOP PRESCOT MARKET PLACE PROPOSALS

OMI have been shortlisted in the RIBA run Prescot Market Place competition. OMI’s proposals aim to transform the historic 800m2 plaza, which has been at the centre of the Merseyside town’s economic and social life for almost 700 years. The project, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, is part of the Prescot Townscape Heritage Initiative, which aims to revitalise the town ahead of the opening of its Shakespeare North Playhouse.

BEHIND THE SCENES AT OMI

We hosted an Open Studio event on 01/06/17 for students at the Manchester and Liverpool Schools of Architecture. More than 40 students took the opportunity to see behind the scenes at OMI. It was great to have so many in attendance, we wish all the students every success with their final submissions.

Best Manchester Buildings

ONE GREENGATE MAKES THE LIST OF THE 10 BEST MANCHESTER BUILDINGS IN THE LAST 10 YEARS

“One Greengate is a considered and carefully crafted proposal, with clarity of design when it comes to the use of massing, optimisation of light and space for the apartments. On cleared ground this scheme doesn’t try to talk to the past … and nor should it. Instead it is forthright and positive reboot for the area with a decent profile at the cap, good communal areas and even room for a riverside walk.”

Jonathan Schofield, Manchester Confidential

Full Top 10 list here:
http://bit.ly/2pbwGIm

Wirral Waters

OMI WIN WIRRAL WATERS ‘POP UP’ VILLAGE COMPETITION

OMI have been selected to advance their competition winning designs for a ‘Pop Up’ village at Egerton Square adjacent to Wirral Metropolitan College. The project will incorporate a restaurant, food hub, retail space, gallery, workshop spaces and outdoor entertainment space, centred around a new public square. The scheme will provide local amenities for the emerging Four Bridges quarter of Peel Holdings’ Wirral Waters Masterplan.

The winning solution places a collection of modular prefabricated dwelling like forms around a new public square. The gable fronted ‘house shaped’ modules can be arranged in single or double storey configuration to provide a range of different sized spaces and are designed to reinforce the idea of a village.

The competition winning scheme is currently being tested with potential occupiers and will be submitted for planning approval later in 2017.

Booth Street

31 Booth Street Office Transformation

31 Booth Street is a Grade 2 listed office building in the upper King Street Conservation area, which forms part of the traditional commercial centre of Manchester.

The transformation of the building re-orientates the main entrance and provides a large welcoming lobby and reception area. The office accommodation has been fully refurbished and improved through maximising light into the office spaces, achieved by increasing ceiling heights and opening up previously obscured arched window heads. The offices are supported by upgraded facilities including full air conditioning, new WC layouts, shower and cycle storage.

The building comprises 25,000 sq. ft of commercial office space and 3,500 sq. ft of A3 restaurant / café space.

Danesgate House

Our transformation and refurbishment of Danesgate House offices to student accommodation is the Outstanding Project Winner and Winner of the Best Commercial Project at the 2017 Lincoln Good Design Awards.

OMI Job

Opportunities with OMI

We are always interested in meeting talented architects at all stages of development. If you believe you have the right qualities, please contact us.

The studio is an attractive and supportive working environment providing excellent opportunities for professional advancement. The practice is Mac-based using Vectorworks software.

We are an equal opportunities employer and committed to a policy of treating all its employees and applicants equally.

To Apply

Please email: info@omiarchitects.com attaching your CV and examples of your work.

OMI Architects

Vist Manchester [06.2015]

All Souls Bolton

SPAB [01.2015]

All Souls Bolton

RIBA Journal [01.2015]

All Souls Bolton

Architecture Today [01.2015]

All Souls Bolton

PRS [2015]

One Greengate

AJ Specification [11.2014]

2 Commercial Street

Architecture Today [08.2013]

Blackshale & Silverstone House

Architects' Journal - RIBA Awards [2011]

Creswell Crags Museum

AJ Small Projects [2010]

Creswell Crags Museum

Grand Designs Handbook [2006]

Private House

City Life [06.2005]

OMI Studio

Architects' Journal - RIBA Awards [2005]

OMI Studio

Architects' Journal [09.2004]

Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art

Prospect [09.2003]

Private House

Architects' Journal [04.2001]

The National Football Museum

Church Building [02/03.2000]

Fourth Church of Christ Scientist

Manchester: Pevsner City Guide [2000]

Fourth Church of Christ Scientist

Manchester: A Guide to Recent Architecture

RIBA Book of 20th Century British Housing

Boundary Lane

New Architects [1998]

Boundary Lane

RIBA Journal [02.1996]

Boundary Lane

Museums Journal [04.1995]

Architects' Journal [08.1994]

Architects' Journal [04.1994]

Boundary Lane