New Planning Application for Skyscraper

OD4A8509A full planning application has been submitted for the construction of two high buildings  in Sheepcote Street at the junction with Broad Street as shown in the photo on the left.

They would occupy the space, currently a car park, between the small roundabout feeding the entrance road to Brindleyplace and the Grade 2 listed old bank building on Broad Street.

The development would comprise a 22-storey 188 apartment block and an 18-storey Innside branded hotel and restaurant. The apartment block being the highest of the two at 69 metres is a little higher than the nearby 11 Brindleyplace at 59 metres which is the same height as the Innside Hotel. So, the development height is perhaps not extreme for the area.

Interestingly, there is no provision for on-site car parking, but the Brindleyplace car park is only 100 metres or so away which normally has spare capacity.

The Planning Application is numbered 2014/09348/PA (click to view this). A good idea of the appearance of the buildings and their siting amongst existing nearby buildings can be viewed in the Related Document Elevations – North East and South West which forms part of the application. Other related documents are included in and viewable from the application.

You can submit a comment on the planning application to the Council here. The closing date for comments is Thursday 29 January.

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Article by: Geoff Caine

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3 thoughts on “New Planning Application for Skyscraper

  1. Pin Ball

    It’s always reassuring to hear how Birmingham is just playing it safe – completely afraid to assert its ‘big city’ credentials with any possible prospect of the many (30-40+ storey ) landmark tower schemes it had proposed over a decade ago….whilst cities like Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield, Liverpool, Cardiff, etc forge ahead with their skyscraper plans…..with Manchester, in particular, throwing them up at such an incredible rate that in around10 years time there will be 15 new skyscrapers [not all of them that attractive it must be said] over 30 storeys high. So much for our “second city” that likes to think big eh? So all we get now is a mediocre rash of mid-rises and a rubbish new spangly lid on top of what is still the worst railway eyesore in Christendom…..all at a snip of a couple of billion….. How the mighty have fallen.

  2. David & Jean Johnson

    Simon, I entirely agree with your comments. I have placed an objection to the plans with the city council, and you and other readers may be interested in the following excerpts from it:

    “1. I believe that the proposed development is totally out of scale with its surroundings. Two towers, of 18 and 22 stories respectively, will completely dwarf the existing neighbours including the former Bank (Grade 2 listed?), the Brasshouse and the former children’s hospital. Only a much smaller building would be appropriate for the very small site.

    2. I object to the demolition of part of the grade 2 listed building on Sheepcote Street. Listed buildings should be left intact, and not subjected to this kind of “salami slicing” to mitigate the fact that the site is too small.

    3. The decision not to provide any on-site parking for either the hotel or the apartments will put enormous pressure on the surrounding streets. With 188 apartments and 180 hotel beds we must expect several hundred cars needing to be parked on an average day. The net result of all of this is likely to be constant problems with on-street parking in the streets around the site. There is much talk in the transport details attached to the application of the expectation that residents and hotel guests will not travel by private car, but will instead use public transport. In practice, while there may be a welcome reduction in car use, the number of cars owned is still increasing. Most residents will have cars to use occasionally, if not every day, and many hotel guests will also bring their cars for longer excursions and onward travel.

    4. The developer mentioned the option of taking out a lease on parking spaces in the Brindley Place car park at the public exhibition. There appears to be no mention of this in the planning application. Such a lease, with spaces available to hotel guests and tenants, might alleviate some of the pressure on on-street parking, but my experience suggests that people are often tempted to park on-street even if they have a car park space if there is any distance to walk. Besides this, the issue arises of the peak use of the Brindley Place car park. While it is true that the car park has spare capacity in normal circumstances, it is heavily used during concerts and other events at Symphony Hall, the ICC and the NIA. Where will the cars displaced by any block leasing go?

    5. Another problem concerns the limited provision of vehicle access for taxis and deliveries on the site. The plan shows just one delivery bay in that part of Sheepcote Street opposite to the Brasshouse, together with space for two vehicles in Oozells way. This provision will have to cope with:
    ◦ Taxis bringing guests to and from the hotel
    ◦ Taxis bringing residents to and from the apartments
    ◦ Residents’ cars picking up and dropping residents at the apartments
    ◦ Removal vans/trucks
    ◦ Vans and lorries making deliveries to the hotel on a daily basis
    ◦ Refuse trucks
    ◦ Delivery trucks from the likes of Ocado, Tesco Direct, Amazon,
    TNT etc. These visits have increased enormously in the past two
    years, and are set to rise even further.

    In respect of the above, the parking bay will be grossly inadequate, and will result in lines of vehicles at times waiting for access to the buildings. Increased pollution is inevitable.

    6. The developers estimate that the construction phase will last for 22 months, staring in 2016. This will cause enormous disruption to traffic on Sheepcote Street throughout this period, particularly as it will overlap with the changes to road use during the construction phase of the Birmingham Metro extension to Centenary Square.

    7. One proposal being considered by the City Council designed to prevent the use of Sheepcote Street as a ‘rat-run’ once the Metro works start would mean that any vehicles leaving the Brindley Place car park would have to exit via Broad Street. This will add considerably to the traffic jams which are already very serious at times.

    8. The developer gives examples of alternatives to private car use which include a reference to “Car2go”, a car club scheme. This organisation withdrew from the Birmingham market earlier this year citing lack of support from motorists in Birmingham. Apart from the fact that the assertion in the developers document is inaccurate, this withdrawal indicates that, in Birmingham at least, such schemes are unlikely to reduce private car use in the foreseeable future.”

    As you can see, Simon, I have not picked up the issue of the quality of the design – I was not able to look closely enough at the plans before I wrote the objection. I assure that you have a point, however.

    I must emphasise that this objection is based on my personal opinion. and does not represent that of any organisation to which I belong.

    If you agree with any of the points I or others raise, do contact the City Council planning department and make your points to them.

  3. SimonBrettell

    I think that it is ludicrous that there is a proposal for 188 room apartment block plus a hotel which does not contain any parking provision. Where are the residents / hotel guests expected to park? The nearby Brindley Place parking often fills during large events held at the NIA. Additionally the design of the buildings shown on the drawings are architecturally poor – There is no aesthetic to the design and they are merely bland and do not fit in with the styles of the nearby buildings. There would be more synergy with surrounding area if the design more closely matched the designs of the buildings at Brindley Place and the Victorian buildings along Sheepcote Street.

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