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City Centre Public Realm

Birmingham City Council, alongside Retail and Colmore Business Improvement Districts (BIDs), has consulted on plans to enhance the public realm in the city centre. It aims to create an attractive, welcoming, and safe environment to attract more visitors to the area.

Consultation for this project initially took place during the early months of 2020.

Consultation was re-opened between 6 March to 9 April 2023 to ensure support and feedback for the scheme is comprehensive and up to date, having taken on-board changes from the original feedback.

High-quality paving materials, including Natural Yorkstone, will be used throughout the scheme area, whilst reinstating heritage paving in sections of Victoria Square.

A kerb-free pedestrian route for passengers travelling from New Street Station to the retail and business centre will be created. Widened footways will make it easier, more welcoming, and safer for pedestrians. It will also become more accessible to those with mobility issues.

We are proposing to extend the existing pedestrian zone and loading restrictions across the scheme area to standardise operation times to 11:00am to 11:00pm, seven days a week. This will ensure a safe and secure environment for pedestrians during times of busy footfall. The area will be safer with greater priority for pedestrians.

Reallocating space to pedestrians requires changes to the current taxi and parking bays. Improved loading facilities will be provided for local businesses outside of the restriction hours to offset the daytime restrictions.

Phase 1

In 2021, the council awarded the works contract to CPC Civils who are to undertake the programme of works for Phase 1 of the Project.

The scheme so far has successfully restored the river water securing a key attraction to the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

On 3 January 2023, CPC Civils commenced works to deliver the public realm upgrade in Victoria Square. The works programme will see the upgrade of Victoria Square, Colmore Square and Waterloo Street by Winter 2024.

For further information on the project delivery and updates visit the CPCCivils project page.

Phase 2

The consultation for Phase 2 of the scheme closed on Sunday 9 April 2023.

The consultation detailed improvements to the city centre’s public realm such as new paving, widened footways, and enhanced street lighting.

What happens next

Your responses will be analysed and used to develop the scheme design, where necessary.

Construction of the City Centre Public Realm Phase 2 scheme is expected to begin in 2024.

Disruption will be minimised as much as possible by:

  • adopting a phased approach to the construction works
  • co-ordinating with other local works
  • maintaining access to businesses where possible. Short-term unavoidable interruptions to access would be undertaken outside normal trading hours

Page last updated: 25 May 2023

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