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New improved city centre public square delivered

6th May 2014

Colmore Business District (CBD) has completed its latest project to make long-term improvements to the public space in Birmingham’s business quarter by delivering the enhanced Colmore Square.

The area in between Colmore Row and Steelhouse Lane has been improved with new soft landscaping and planting as well as feature lighting and benches. The square now also contains a chess garden ‘pocket park’ featuring two stone tables with inset chessboards.

The Colmore Square scheme is the first area enhancement civil engineering project to be undertaken solely by a Business Improvement District (BID) in Birmingham. The scheme was designed by Capita’s land planning team with construction work implemented by The Landscape Group Ltd. Project management services were provided by Mace.

Colmore Square is CBD’s third public realm enhancement project, following the delivery of Church Street Square and the enhancement of Livery Street Wall. It also comes ahead of a number of future planned improvement projects, including permanent enhancements to Cornwall Street, Newhall Street and the square outside Snow Hill Station.

Rob Valentine, vice chair of CBD, said “The delivery of Colmore Square shows the strength a BID can have within the city to drive forward permanent improvements to make Birmingham a more attractive place in which to do business. We are committed to investing in our open spaces and helping to create a more walkable, sustainable and high quality city centre.

“Led and steered by our projects manager, Mike Mounfield, and supported by Mace, we are pleased that the project was delivered within the proposed works timeframe. Having created a great public space within the city centre, we look forward to holding community events in the square, including a chess tournament in the summer.”

The delivery of the project has been welcomed by legal firm, Shoosmiths, based in Two Colmore Square which overlooks the space. Head of office, Jason Jackson commented, “It is important to work in an area that is attractive and in which our employees and clients feel safe. The enhanced Colmore Square is now a much more pleasant space to pass through and we feel the improvements in the streetscape with improved lighting will strengthen perceptions of safety in the area. We also look forward to the events the new space will encourage, including a game of chess in the square!”

Peter Dunlop, associate landscape architect from Capita, said, “We’re really pleased to have had an opportunity to work with CBD on this project. The old Colmore Square felt hard, exposed and under-utilised, but this intervention has created a more attractive and inviting space to be in. We look forward to seeing the square used to a greater extent in the future.”

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