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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

New £165 million development in Birmingham gets the go-ahead

Galliard and Apsley have been given the green light from Birmingham City Council for a new £165 million scheme.

The joint venture partners’ proposed scheme at Soho Loop received the go-ahead last week, with the project set to be known as Soho Wharf.

It will provide 750 new homes on a derelict site on Birmingham’s Main Line Canal, opposite Birmingham City Hospital. The 11.7-acre site, on Dudley Road, will be bounded by Spring Hill and Western Road, as well as the Main Line Canal.

The scheme will be made up of 102 two and three-bedroom townhouses and 650 one and two-bedroom apartments, plus over 10,000 sq ft of commercial space.

The project will create new public realm, parks and gardens, and shared amenity space, as well as new pedestrian, cycle and vehicle routes which plan to enable public access through the site.

New £165 million development in Birmingham gets the go-ahead

A direct route to the city centre will also be provided by a new canal bridge, connecting the area with the existing towpath, while a public waterfront space is planned to make the most of the scheme’s canal-side location.

The scheme - designed by Claridge Architects, which also worked with Galliard and Apsley on the Timber Yard development in Birmingham’s Southside district – is a 15-minute walk away from the city centre.

From glasshouse to modern development

In the late 18th century, the site was partially occupied by a large glasshouse, known as Park Glass House. The building was constructed by local glasscutter Isaac Hawker, but the glassworks were demolished in the 1870s and replaced by Silverworks.

The site was then redeveloped with various industrial and residential properties in the 19th and 20th centuries as part of Birmingham’s rapid expansion, driven by its central role in the Industrial Revolution.

A major partnership

The joint venture between Galliard and Apsley House Capital was formed in 2016, with the aim of acquiring brownfield sites in the West Midlands to provide mixed-use schemes.

The partnership has already amassed a sizeable portfolio, with five sites in Birmingham and a gross development value of £500 million.

As well as Soho Wharf, the sites include Timber Yard, St Paul’s Quarter, Belgrave Middleway and B1 Summer Hill Way.

Timber Yard has reached sales of £61 million (more than 65% of the 379-apartment scheme), with construction scheduled for completion in 2021. Soho Wharf, meanwhile, will start on site immediately.

Stephen Conway, executive chairman of Galliard Homes, said of the latest project: “Our vision for Soho Wharf is to deliver a residential-led, mixed-use scheme that will be truly transformative for Birmingham. We are pleased the council shares our vision for the site. The approved scheme forms part of the Greater Icknield Masterplan, the largest brownfield housing-led redevelopment framework within Birmingham and is therefore strategically important for the long-term regeneration of the area, which is already undergoing major change.”

He added: “Soho Wharf is the next big development opportunity and with planning now in place we’re excited to be bringing the project forward and helping the council achieve its ambition of creating more homes and attractive places to live for the people of Birmingham.”

Robin Norstrom, director of Apsley House Capital, said: “Throughout history, the site has played an important part in the development of the city, through the provision of jobs at the factories and the homes that once occupied the site. Strategically located between Edgbaston and the Jewellery Quarter, Soho Wharf will be the start of a new chapter, bringing the site back to life and enhancing the local area with a design-led urban scheme that provides a mix of homes, commercial space, amenities and public realm.”

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