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Chamberlain Square plans draw a downcast response

Commentators dub CGIs of plans for the first phase of the Paradise scheme 'bland' after they go on show

A computer-generated image showing plans for Chamberlain Square

Plans for Chamberlain Square have been branded sterile, cold and bland after new images were unveiled.

The Post revealed new CGIs of the square with new granite steps, seating, trees and hedges for Chamberlain Square and the new “Centenary Way” – the proposed east to west route to Centenary Square.

The images were unveiled as proposals for the first phase of the £500 million Paradise scheme, which include the first two buildings, were expected to be given the green light.

However, they received a lukewarm response on the Post site with commentators saying the plans were underwhelming given the importance of the Paradise scheme.

Zola Lloyd said: “Dreadful! Sterile, corporate, bland...Just bad on so many levels!

“Come back in 40 years and you’ll be reading a BP headline that Paradise will be flattened again because it looks so dated and brutal.”

Joynal Abdin added: “Looks so sterile and cold. I hoped we could do better. Should last about 25 years until the next review and rebuild.”

Alice said: “The only word to describe this development is horrible. The claustrophobic, cramped buildings will form wind tunnels and it’s amusing to note that basic perspective has been ignored in predicting shadows in the graphics. The trees appear to throw shadows very much larger than the horrible shoe box buildings around them. People will scuttle through ‘Paradise’ as if it’s purgatory.”

Three applications will go before Birmingham City Council’s planning committee on Thursday which the council says stand to deliver “transformational redevelopment”.

The documents, drawn up by council officers, state: “The new high quality and simple landscaping of Chamberlain Square allows the buildings to command attention and better presents the city’s finest architectural masterpieces and therefore fully supports the application.

“The proposal will preserve or enhance the setting of nearby listed buildings and listed Chamberlain Memorial and the character of the Conservation Area.”

The work relies on a vast amount of demolition work – which has been slow to progress – including Central Library and the Birmingham Conservatoire building.

It also includes the new Centenary Way which forms part of plans to improve pedestrian access across the city.

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