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Birmingham City Council

Frequently asked questions

What we do

We work with a range of customers, both from within Birmingham City Council and other public bodies. Our city council clients include:

Constituencies - many council services have been transferred to 10 districts across the city, to which we provide a full range of property services.

Children, Young People and Families - as well as our general range of services, we provide a Schools Emergency Property Repairs Service 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, planned property maintenance, advice and management of asbestos and legionella issues and disability access audits.

Highways - services include road works and car park resurfacing, canal towpaths, service tunnels, new build and refurbishment of burial grounds, cemeteries and incinerators.

Housing - we offer services including design, refurbishment, demolition and sustainability and energy management advice.

Local Services - these projects include community centres, libraries, leisure centres, museums, play areas, parks and park buildings and swimming pools.

Adults and Communities - we have worked on projects including adult training centres, children's community centres, day centres, residential care homes and sheltered housing

We do not only work for other council services - we also work for external clients, drawn from a range of public bodies, including:

Colleges, nurseries, schools and universities

Other councils

Health authorities

Housing groups, associations and trusts



Who can use Urban Design?

We work for a wide range of clients in the Midlands. You can use Urban Design if you are a public body such as:

- a nursery, school, college, university or other educational organisation;
- a registered social landlord;
- a local authority;
- a health authority.




What can Urban Design offer that others can't?

We can offerour customers a range of benefits, including:

A "one stop shop" we provide all the services you need for maintaining, refurbishing or developing buildings. Our multi-disciplinary team also includes a number of other specialists.

Specialist services -Our flexible team includes trained experts in Disability Discrimination Act audits, site investigations, energy conservation, lottery funding and asbestos management.

The Birmingham Construction Partnership by working closely with contractors Tomlinsons, Thomas Vale and Wates Group, we can draw on their knowledge, expertise and resources to improve the design, cost and quality of projects.




What is your track record like on timescales and costs?

Our 200-strong team is experienced in providing solutions to keep projects on budget, on time and to meet customers' needs.

The latest performance indicators show that the Birmingham Construction Partnership is ahead of national industry averages for projects completed with zero or minimal defects, on time and on budget.




Who could I contact if I needed advice on developing a new building I have planned?

We are widely experienced in carrying out feasibility studies and project managing new build developments, including extensions to schools, sports facilities and other commercial buildings. To find out more, contact us and a member of our staff will be able to advise you.




How can you help if the building involved in my project is listed?

We have many staff experienced in dealing with listed buildings, including Birmingham Town Hall and the city's Council House. We can source sympathetic materials to match the existing structure, recycle materials to preserve and retain original features and recreate areas to restore them to their natural and original condition. For more information, please contact us.



I would like some advice on sustainability issues and energy conservation for buildings. Who could help me?

Our energy management and sustainability team provides our clients with advice on energy conservation within buildings and provide a consultancy service on sustainable solutions in any new build and refurbishment projects we carry out. contact us if you need further information about the services we provide in this area.




How much will it cost to use Urban Design? Can you compete with the private sector?

We usually calculate our fees as a percentage of the construction cost of the project, although this will depend on how complex it is.

Our fees are market tested when we regularly compete for work against the private sector, securing commissions from a range of other public bodies in the West Midlands.

Our fees are also continuously benchmarked against a range of public sector organisations.




I'm interested in approaching Urban Design to tender for a project. How would I go about this?

We are always happy to discuss new projects and offer advice. Contact us for further information.



What am I covered for under the schools emergency property repair service?

For further information please visit schools emergency page.