Paradise Circus redevelopment set for 2015 start

THE long-awaited regeneration of Birmingham’s Paradise Circus looks set for a 2015 start as part of a series of big ticket project developments around the city centre linked to the Enterprise Zone.

It is understood that the schemes – which also include taking the city centre Metro extension from New Street Station to Broad Street and redeveloping the 21-acre Wholesale Markets site in Digbeth – would be financed partly through an Enterprise Zone business rate retention scheme.

The Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) will be able to borrow against a stream of business rates paid by firms moving into the area over a 25-year period.

It is suggested this will generate £82.3m for Paradise Circus and £40m for other projects.

Brindleyplace developer Argent, which has signed an exclusivity agreement to work with the council to transform the Paradise Circus site, expects clearance work will begin in 2015, including demolition of the Central Library and the Paradise Forum walk-through area which is home to shops, bars and restaurants.

Reports suggest all existing buildings, including the Copthorne Hotel and the Conservatoire are likely to be demolished to make way for 126,000 sq ms of grade A office space.

A planning application for Paradise Circus is due to be be submitted to Birmingham Council imminently.