Snow Hill scheme ready to put peo­ple at heart of dis­trict Coun­cil backs £16m plan for pub­lic square, pedes­trian ar­eas and less traf­fic

Birmingham Post - - NEWS - Carl Jack­son Coun­cil Cor­re­spon­dent

A£16 MIL­LION re­vamp of the area around Birm­ing­ham’s Snow Hill Sta­tion is set to start later this year af­ter it got the green light from coun­cil chiefs.

The re­de­vel­op­ment will see the heart of Birm­ing­ham’s busi­ness dis­trict made more pedes­trian friendly with traf­fic re­stric­tions.

The scheme will be split into nine in­di­vid­ual projects com­pleted over three phases. Birm­ing­ham City Coun­cil’s cab­i­net agreed to re­lease £1.25 mil­lion for de­tailed busi­ness cases to be drawn up for each project and to pro­ceed with the first two phases.

Phase one is now due to com­mence in Oc­to­ber and should be com­pleted by May next year.

The sin­gle project in­cludes ban­ning the right turn from Livery Street onto Col­more Row and in­tro­duc­ing mea­sures in Li­onel Street and sur­round­ing roads to pro­vide an al­ter­na­tive bus route.

It will also change one-way traf­fic to two-way between Livery Street’s junc­tions with Corn­wall Street and Bar­wick Street to serve ve­hi­cles ex­it­ing Snow Hill rail­way sta­tion.

A re­stricted park­ing zone will be in­tro­duced on Col­more Row to min­imise road mark­ings while ‘high qual­ity’ paving ma­te­ri­als will also be laid down in the area.

Phase two out­lines four projects and is due to start in April next year.

It in­cludes trans­form­ing Corn­wall Street to a quiet route en­cour­ag­ing busi­nesses to ‘spill out’ on to the road.

Ed­mund Street will be changed from one-way traf­fic to two-way to serve cars leav­ing Snow Hill sta­tion.

Steel­house Lane will be closed off between Col­more Cir­cus Queensway and Print­ing House Street to cre­ate a pub­lic square for pedes­tri­ans. The fi­nal part of the work will be to spruce up the square in front of Snow Hill sta­tion, lay­ing nat­u­ral stone paving, cre­at­ing ad­di­tional seat­ing and im­prov­ing light­ing.

Coun­cil leader Ian Ward (Lab, Shard End) said: “These schemes will mark a real step change in the qual­ity of the pub­lic realm around Snow Hill. They will in­tro­duce a re­duc­tion in the amount of traf­fic in these streets and make them more pedes­trian friendly.

“This will im­prove Birm­ing­ham’s rep­u­ta­tion mak­ing it a more walka- ble city.”

Around £9.9 mil­lion has been ob­tained to de­liver the works, thanks to grants from the Greater Birm­ing­ham and Soli­hull Lo­cal En­ter­prise Part­ner­ship’s Lo­cal Growth Fund, the En­ter­prise Zone, the Col­more Busi­ness Im­prove­ment Dis­trict (BID) as well as in­vest­ment from the pri­vate sec­tor.

Michele Wilby, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of Col­more BID, said: “Col­more BID has cam­paigned for some time to make the Snow Hill area eas­ier and safer to nav­i­gate for pedes­tri­ans and cy­clists and to cre­ate a more wel­com­ing en­vi­ron­ment for vis­i­tors and com­muters to the city Snow Hill rail sta­tion.

“We are de­lighted, fol­low­ing our sig­nif­i­cant in­vest­ment, to see the var­i­ous phases pro­gress­ing and look for­ward to work­ing with Birm­ing­ham City Coun­cil, Trans­port for West Mid­lands and other key stake­hold­ers to re­alise this ex­cit­ing, longterm vi­sion for the Busi­ness Dis­trict.”

Fur­ther fund­ing would have to be found to de­liver phase three of the scheme which out­lines the fi­nal four projects.

It in­cludes chang­ing a stretch of Ne­whall Street from one-way traf­fic to two-way traf­fic in or­der to help cen­tre from re­move ve­hi­cles from Col­more Row, chang­ing the di­rec­tion of traf­fic on Ben­netts Hill and re­strict­ing traf­fic on Tem­ple Row West to one-way head­ing north.

A fur­ther project is to spruce up the west side of Col­more Row with im­proved paving, veg­e­ta­tion and ‘be­spoke’ seat­ing.

An­other scheme in­cludes sig­nalling im­prove­ments and lane-nar­row­ing to the Col­more Cir­cus Queensway, Snow Hill Queensway and Col­more Row junc­tion to im­prove traf­fic flow.

The fi­nal works will see aes­thetic im­prove­ments to Ne­whall Street.

> Corn­wall Street is to be­come a ‘quiet route’ en­cour­ag­ing busi­nesses to ‘spill out’ on to the road

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