The Lowry

Michael Wilford & Partners, Salford, 2000


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The bold entrance canopy suggests the influence of 'maximalists' such as Alsop and Coates 

Richard Bryant/Arcaid (website)     Download Original

  • The bold entrance canopy suggests the influence of     
  • External view    
  • The yellow, orange and purple colour scheme  is characteristically Wilford and is either cheering or unsettling depending on your mood    
  • View towards the theatre    
  • The flamboyant Lyric Theatre is an attempt to rekindle the glitz and glamour of traditional auditoria using a contemporary language    
  • The smaller Quay Theatre is appropriate for more intimate performances    
  • The galleries are clearly expressed    
  • Inside one of the gallery spaces    
  • The interactive artworks gallery is hung within the volume of the main foyer    
  • Site plan    
  • Ground floor plan    
  • First floor plan    
  • Second floor plan    
  • Fourth floor plan    
  • Section A-A    
  • Section B-B    
  • Working detail: Key plan of foyer and section through foyer glazing    
  • Working details; detail plan of glazing and isometric at base of foyer glazing    

Situated by the waterside of the Manchester shipping canal the Lowry is a £105 million Millenium funded, landmark theatre and arts centre

The 23,350 m2 building, dedicated to housing the art works of L.S. Lowry and various performance and exhibition spaces, is located by the waterside in the redeveloped area of Salford Quays in Greater Manchester.

The architect's ambition was to create a new focal point within the community to encourage people to experience the visual and performing arts. To emphasise this point the architecture is deliberately transparent.

The complex brief includes galleries for touring exhibitions and for the City of Salford's Lowry collection, a Lowry study centre, the 'Artworks' interactive childrens' gallery, a 1,730 seat lyric theatre and 450 seat flexible courtyard theatre, rehearsal rooms and full support facilities, bars, cafes, retail and hospitality suites.

Designed to reflect the surrounding landscapes and flourishing waterways, the building is clad in glass and stainless steel surfaces which contrasts with the highly colourful interior.


  • Begun: Apr 1997
  • Completed: Apr 2000
  • Floor area: 23,350m2
  • Sector: Arts and culture
  • Total cost: £105M
  • Funding: Millenium, Arts and Heritage funding
  • Procurement: JCT Management Contract
  • Address: The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, Salford, M50 3A, United Kingdom

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