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£500m Birmingham regeneration plan

Words: Laura Edgar
Birmingham Smithfield

Birmingham is launching a £500 million plan to regenerate a 14-hectare site that will deliver 1,000 homes and 3,000 jobs.

Birmingham City Council has said this development represents “a once-in-a-generation opportunity to deliver a unique destination for the city”, building on its heritage.

Situated in the city centre, Birmingham Smithfield aims to capitalise on its location next to the city’s main retail district, including the Bullring shopping centre and New Street Station.

It is expected that the site will create more than 100,000 square metres of floor space, 1,000 homes and 3,000 jobs, adding an estimated £470 million GVA (gross added value – a measure of the contribution to the economy of each individual producer, industry or sector in the UK that is used to calculate gross domestic product) to the local economy.

The 10-year plan includes proposals for pedestrian and cycle routes, and new public spaces, while Birmingham’s Metro tram system will be integrated into the site, meaning the development will be within minutes of the proposed high-speed rail 2 Curzon terminus, said the council.

Sir Albert Bore, leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “The area’s vibrant heritage, dating back to 1166 with its focus on markets, will be central to its future transformation, with the name Birmingham Smithfield reflecting its unique history. While the area’s wholesale markets will move, its retail markets will be improved to encourage more niche and specialist traders to locate alongside the famous brands on offer at the nearby Bullring retail centre.”

Birmingham Smithfield is being launched today (11 March) at MIPIM, a four-day real estate exhibition and conference held in Cannes.

Director of planning and regeneration at the council, Waheed Nazir, explained: “The opportunity to create such a unique and vibrant development is very rare. By showcasing the scheme at MIPIM, we are directly targeting potential investors and developers to secure interest from across the globe.”

An eight-week public consultation will begin on the plans after Birmingham Smithfield is launched in the city on 19 March.