Birmingham's Paradise Circus redevelopment gets green light (UK)

The dramatic transformation of one of the most important and historic parts of Birmingham city center is set to become a reality after award winning developers, Argent, gained outline planning approval from Birmingham City Council for the circa £450 million (approx. €531.3 million) complete redevelopment of Paradise Circus - widely recognized as one of the UK's most strategically important development sites.

Around seventeen acres of land between Centenary Square and Chamberlain Square will be developed to provide up to 12,000 jobs in a mixed use redevelopment including offices, shops, leisure and cultural facilities together with civic amenities and a new four star hotel to replace the existing Copthorne Hotel. In total, the development will comprise a gross internal area of some 1.8 million ft² (approx. 167,225 m²) in ten new buildings, making it one of the UK's largest city center planning applications approved this year.

Leading the Paradise Circus team is Argent's Senior Project Director Rob Groves, he said: "The redevelopment of Paradise Circus has the potential to make the most significant impact on the city center for a generation. The site's combined qualities of its central location and historic landmarks creates an unrivalled opportunity to create a sustainable, first class environment that will transform this key part of Birmingham city center.

"Receiving the unanimous support of the City's Planning Committee is a fantastic start to the scheme and a reflection of the significant commitment made by the whole Paradise team to deliver this complex application. We believe that we are now in a position to build on this momentum and will continue to move forward with the detailed design process to bring the development to life."

Paradise Circus is the first development to move forward within Birmingham's new Enterprise Zone with approval for an investment of over £60m into the required infrastructure changes to support the initial launch of the development and drive the regeneration which is set to create thousands of jobs.
Council Leader Sir Albert Bore is looking forward to seeing the development take shape: "The redevelopment of Paradise Circus is a vital and integral part of the delivery of Birmingham's Big City Plan. Argent's track record for successfully delivering big city center regeneration projects not just in Birmingham with Brindleyplace but across the UK, sets the tone for the high quality development the city deserves.

"It will make a huge and positive contribution to the city's ongoing renaissance and, in concert with other projects such as New Street Gateway, the regeneration of Eastside, various transport initiatives and the Library of Birmingham, will create a high quality city environment which will help to secure our position as a world-class city. Very importantly, it will also return the city's renowned historic buildings to a more suitable setting in which they can be enjoyed and admired."

The redevelopment will provide a traffic-free setting for the Grade I Listed Town Hall and create a series of pedestrian streets linked to new squares. Views of the landmark clock tower on the Grade II Listed Council House will be reinstated while the façade of Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery will be opened up to public gaze for the first time since the 1970s. Direct pedestrian access to the Jewellery Quarter from the traditional City Centre will also be improved by reducing the impact of the existing major highways and the provision of extensive pedestrian crossing points.

A new concert hall, with a minimum of 450 seats, to replace the existing Adrian Boult Hall is to be created within the Paradise redevelopment, with the Birmingham Conservatoire moving only a short distance to its new home in Louisa Ryland House on Edmund Street.

Following the planning approval decision, work will start on the next phase of the project by working up the detailed design of the first buildings.
The team of professional advisers and consultants working on the proposals includes Gary Taylor's Altitude Real Estate as development adviser; planning consultants, Drivers Jonas Deloitte; Glenn Howells Architects; Peter Brett Associates; Arup; Faithful & Gould; Alan Baxter Associates; The Environmental Dimension Partnership; Townshend Landscape Architects, DLA Piper and Core Marketing.

Source: Paradise Circus

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