Birmingham City Councilsâ€™ ambitious Eastside Masterplan was formally unveiled today, 1st February, by Sir Albert Bore, Leader of Birmingham City Council at Millennium Point.
Designed by leading architects HOK International, the innovative masterplan forms the pivotal role of a massive 10-year renaissance project which proposes to breath new life into the Eastside district and drive forward the creation of possibly one of Europeâ€™s largest urban regeneration schemes to date.
The redevelopment of Eastside stretches from the shopping core of the city to the Middleway, comprising Aston University and Science Park and historic Digbeth, covering an initial area of over 40.5 hectares (100 acres). Blueprints for the colossal project reveal the development of some 668,880 sq m (7.2 million sq ft) of space and opportunities for refurbishment of the remainder.
The development will comprise 246,185 sq m (2.65 million sq ft) of offices, 74,320 sq m (800,000 sq ft) of retail, leisure and hotel space and 247,114 sq m (2.66 million sq ft) for residential accommodation providing approximately3,500 new homes. The sheer scale (which to put into context, is five times the size of Brindleyplace) allows the developers to include a wide range of units and building types.The private sector funding requirement, which could be in the region of Â£5 billion, will include these commercial and residential proposals.
The masterplan also allows for the further development of 92,900 sq m (1 million sq ft) of space for cultural and education purposes.
Within these areas, Aston Science Park has proposals to extend the Science Park within Eastside and the council is seeking to relocate the Central Library from Paradise Circus.
Peter Beckwith of The Eastside Partnership (formerly chief executive of LET plc), comments: â€œWe have been working jointly with the major landowners of Eastside for several years to bring forward our vision of Eastside which will provide a new style and quality of life in Central Birmingham. It is very rare to control a 15-acre site so close to a major city centre. This is a fantastic opportunity to develop over 1 million sq ft on our site with 83,610 sq m (900,000 sq ft) of offices, together with residential and canal side retail/leisure.â€
Barry Allen of FPDSavills, is advising The Eastside Partnership, he comments: â€œBirminghamâ€™s re-invention as a vibrant, leading European city has ignited huge public and private sector investment into high quality retail, leisure, conference and tourism facilities. The redevelopment of Eastside will help to break the constraints on Grade A office space in the city core which has been short of supply in recent years.
â€œOnce completed, Eastside will enjoy the environment and accessibility of an out-of-town location, buildings suited to the 21st Century and with all the advantages a city centre has to offer.â€
Pierre Baillargeon, head of commercial architecture at HOK International Ltd, adds: â€œEastside is a unique opportunity to transform a major inner-city core. As master planners for the area the aim has been to create a series of new complementary neighbourhoods linked to the adjacent city centre through an extensive pedestrian parkland network.
â€œThe proposal to accommodate a number of different uses including residential, commercial, cultural and educational will provide opportunities for a number of new landmark buildings and ensure a stable economic base for future regeneration.â€
(source: FPD Savills)