Canal­side project will cre­ate 220 apart­ments

Birmingham Post - - NEWS - Tam­lyn Jones Busi­ness Correspondent

AMA­JOR canal­side de­vel­op­ment in Birm­ing­ham’s Jew­ellery Quar­ter is to go ahead. Birm­ing­ham-based IM Prop­er­ties and its res­i­den­tial de­vel­op­ment arm Spit­fire Be­spoke Homes will build 220 apart­ments on the Ne­whall Square de­vel­op­ment, off Ne­whall Street, af­ter be­ing given plan­ning per­mis­sion by Birm­ing­ham City Coun­cil.

The project, which will reach up to 11 storeys, will con­tain mainly one­and two-bed­room apart­ments with a small num­ber of three-bed­room town­houses, res­i­dents’ club­house, pub­lic square, and four shops.

The project, which in­cor­po­rates Grade II-listed build­ings, has been de­signed by Birm­ing­ham-based prac­tice Associated Ar­chi­tects and the apart­ments will be avail­able to rent only.

This is the lat­est phase of the re­gen­er­a­tion of Ne­whall Square which has al­ready wel­comed a new Trav­elodge ho­tel, Stayc­ity apartho­tel and Co-op con­ve­nience store.

Associated Ar­chi­tects direc­tor Richard Perry said: “We’re ob­vi­ously very pleased to have reached this mile­stone on such a sig­nif­i­cant project for the Jew­ellery Quar­ter.

“It has been a real col­lab­o­ra­tive ef­fort, achieved through con­struc­tive en­gage­ment with stake­hold­ers, in­clud­ing plan­ning and con­serva- tion, His­toric Eng­land and the Vic­to­rian So­ci­ety.

“It’s great that per­mis­sion has been granted for this high-qual­ity scheme, re­gen­er­at­ing a sub­stan­tial site that has lain derelict for too long.”

The land ear­marked for the de­vel­op­ment, which in­cludes a pay-and­dis­play car park, has been va­cant for more than a decade and build­ings in the new scheme will be named Elk­ing­ton House, Whit­more House and Wright House as a ref­er­ence to the site’s for­mer use.

Elk­ing­ton & Co was es­tab­lished dur­ing 1830 and oc­cu­pied the whole site bounded by Fleet Street, Char­lotte Street and Ne­whall Street.

It was here the com­pany de­vel­oped and patented the first ef­fec­tive elec­tro­plat­ing process, with the name Wright House cho­sen as a nod to John Wright who in­vented it.

The fac­tory was built ei­ther side of Birm­ing­ham and Faze­ley Canal and the Whit­more Arm and the fac­tory con­tin­ued to be de­vel­oped and ex­panded with more mod­ern build­ings through­out the 20th cen­tury.

The works closed in the 1950s and the build­ing be­came Birm­ing­ham Mu­seum of Science and In­dus­try.

A Grade II-listed sec­tion of the old works’ of­fices at 144 Ne­whall Street re­mains to this day and is known for its dis­tinc­tive, bright yel­low colour, al­though this will be re­painted as part of the de­vel­op­ment.

This por­tico, plus the old Whit­more Ware­house in the square and the derelict 94 Char­lotte Street, will also be used within the new de­vel­op­ment. The canal arm will be turned into a wa­ter fea­ture.

> An artist’s im­pres­sion of the new apart­ments and com­mer­cial space on Ne­whall Square in the Jew­ellery Quar­ter

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