Manchester has a richly deserved reputation for sporting excellence. Its football teams are among the most famous in the world, the names of its world champions in different disciplines are legion, and the city has successfully hosted huge events including the Commonwealth Games.
And, unlike other cities around the world, Manchester created a lasting legacy with the Etihad Stadium and other sports facilities enjoying full use rather than being left to rot.
The spotlight shines again
In the last few weeks the city has once again been basking in the sporting spotlight. Both United and City have made the headlines thanks to stories involving their charismatic strikers, while the Red half of Manchester is celebrating a first trophy under Jose Mourinho and the Blue half is looking forward to European glory.
Add to that the strange tale of a mysterious package being picked up from the headquarters of British Cycling in Stuart Street, and hardly a day goes by without a big story involving the city.
Manchester sports university proposals
Sport in Manchester received another massive boost this month when plans to build a world class sports university in the east of the city were revealed.
The development could attract thousands of students from around the world to the new campus which would be built in the shadow of the Etihad Stadium.
The new sports campus is likely to become part of Manchester Metropolitan University and would be the centrepiece of a massive development which would not only include sports facilities but also housing, hotels, and shops.
Large scale investment in sport and housing
It is a huge undertaking which would revitalise the east side of Manchester and could attract hundreds of millions of pounds of investment.
The council have developed the plans and will be formulating a business case for their proposals in the next few months. The council has the support of Manchester City, and the football club and its owners will be playing a major role in delivering the project.
The new sports university would use the existing facilities around the Etihad Stadium including the squash, tennis and athletics centres as well as the football club's training grounds.
New training centres would also be built and the sports university's campus would include laboratories, halls of residence and offices. The cost of the new campus is expected to run into millions of pounds though exactly who would fund this is unclear at this stage.
However, the package of proposals goes beyond sport. Other plans will see thousands of new homes built and existing housing estates redeveloped. Even the former headquarters of Greater Manchester Police will be converted into offices to attract businesses into the area.
A fine sporting legacy
There is always something exciting happening in Manchester's vibrant sporting community and the building of a new sports university, along with massive urban and social redevelopment, will be another boost to the city's sporting and economic future.
In the 15 years since Manchester hosted the Commonwealth Games the transformation of the area around the Etihad Stadium has being amazing and it is set to continue should the new plans come to fruition.