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Southside Public Realm improvements | Birmingham City Council

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Southside Public Realm improvements

Work will begin in April 2021 to create a new public square outside the Hippodrome and to improve facilities for pedestrians and cyclists in the area.

Well known as one of the most diverse and creative areas of Birmingham, Southside Business District Limited (formally known as Southside BID) supports a diverse range of businesses. The Southside Public Realm improvement scheme will create better connections and a cultural heart for Southside to further promote the area, whilst celebrating and highlighting a huge range of local talent.

In December 2017 improvements to traffic movements in the area were completed including prohibition of through traffic from Ladywell Walk to Smallbrook Queensway. This supported the proposed transformation of the Southside area into a new “front-door” for Birmingham city centre; creating a new public space adjacent to Birmingham Hippodrome, and improving the quality of key local streets to provide a safe and attractive environment for pedestrians and cyclists.

In February 2021, the Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment and Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources approved the Full Business Case for an estimated £9.5 million scheme, to deliver improved walking and cycling routes from Southside to New Street Station and a new public square adjacent to Birmingham Hippodrome.

The improvement works will transform walking and cycling connections from New Street Station to Southside with:

  • An improved pedestrian crossing over Smallbrook Queensway
  • High quality paving between Hill Street, Hurst Street and Ladywell Walk
  • Improved segregation of the existing contraflow cycleway on Hill Street.

A new public square outside the Hippodrome on Hurst Street will also be created and provide:

  • A distinctive and instantly identifiable space within the City’s public spaces
  • A flexible space catering to a range of users for a wide variety of public events
  • Hostile Vehicle Mitigation measures to protect the public 

Decluttering, improvements to street furniture and lighting, and tree planting will also make the area more welcoming and attractive.  

The scheme forms part of the Enterprise Zone Investment Plan (EZIP) and is a prominent infrastructure project as part of the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) Enterprise Zone.

The works are due to commence in April 2021 and last approximately 12 months.

The consultation for this project was carried out in June and July 2019. A report and technical drawings of the scheme can be found in the Full Business Case.

Artist's impression of the new view from Hurst Street towards the Hippodrome Theatre.