CG image of what the Smithfield regeneration project could produce.

‘Landmark’ Birmingham city centre regeneration scheme to create 9,000 new jobs

Revised designs for a ‘landmark’ scheme that will regenerate a 17-hectare site in the heart of Birmingham have been submitted to the City Council, after the public were invited to a series of events to view and provide feedback on planned changes for Smithfield Birmingham. 

Plans include more than 3,000 new homes and have the potential to create major economic opportunities, including 9,000 new jobs. The revised planning application is due to be considered by Birmingham City Council’s planning committee in early 2024. 

Designs were changed to address an objection from Historic England to the planning application; and respond to changes as a result of the Building Safety Act. 

The large events space, Festival Square, is now called ‘Manor Square’, and has been relocated to sit above the buried moat and manor house of the de Birmingham family, to celebrate the importance of the site as the birthplace of Birmingham and the City’s historic Bull Ring Markets. 

The new Bull Ring Markets have been designed to avoid building over the buried archaeology of the moat and manor house whilst retaining their historic location next to St Martin’s Church. The markets will be located in two buildings: one consisting of a food market, dining hall, restaurant and event space, and the second the home to the rag market.

Colin Murphy, Project Lead on Smithfield Birmingham for Lendlease, commented: “Throughout 2023 Lendlease and our design teams redesigned aspects of the masterplan to further enhance and protect the heritage of Birmingham’s markets. 

“It’s been great to speak to people about the changes and hear their views of the development. The re-submission of our planning application reflects that engagement and is an important step forward in Birmingham’s transformation as an international city.” 

A market has operated at Smithfield for over 800 years and the revised plans provide a new modern home for the city’s historic Bull Ring Markets. Smithfield Birmingham will form an ‘iconic’ new centrepiece for the city centre and the vision for the project is of a sustainable, green, and inclusive place with people at the heart of a zero-carbon development. 

Smithfield Birmingham will drive opportunities for the city’s economy, create new major cultural and leisure attractions, vibrant retail markets and space for start-ups, small business, and entrepreneurs.

It will be a ‘distinctive’ place that reflects the area’s rich history with high quality architecture, a network of green infrastructure, public spaces, and a dynamic new residential neighbourhood.

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