All four skyscrapers in Deansgate Square – including the South Tower, the tallest building outside London – were evacuated this morning around 1 p.m.
Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said they were investigating a “potential suspicious object” in an apartment and asked residents and staff to leave as soon as possible and stay behind a 100-meter barrier.
The ambulance service participated along with experts from the Army’s bomb disposal team, who examined the unit.
Police later revealed in a statement that officers had carried out a raid in connection with a drug investigation.
A 24-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of drugs and gun crimes.
Detective Chris Downey, of the GMP’s City of Manchester CID, said: “While present at the apartment, officers discovered a possible explosive device.
“Explosive Ordnance Disposing (EOD) was called to the scene to assess the device, which has since been considered to have been a major fireworks display.
“We would like to thank the residents for their patience and compliance while working with the Greater Manchester Fire Service and North West Ambulance Service to ensure the incident was handled as quickly and safely as possible.”
Two-bedroom apartments in the South Tower on Deansgate Square cost up to £ 400,000.
A three-bedroom penthouse is currently on the market for £ 2.6 million.
Police say the suspect remains in custody for questioning.