business

City centre road changes from Monday - as new walkway finally reconnects landmark squares

Another step forward for Paradise development

Two of Birmingham's landmark squares will be reconnected this weekend when a walkway reopens after being closed for two years - but drivers are bracing themselves for more road closures.

Centenary Way connects Chamberlain Square and Centenary Square and used to run under the old Central Library building.

It was one of the city's busiest pedestrian routes, enabling people to access Broad Street and the ICC via the Paradise Forum shopping mall whose shops closed at the end of 2014.

The walk through was finally shut in November 2015 to allow for the demolition of the old Central Library as part of the £700 million Paradise development, sending pedestrians on a detour via Fletchers Walk.

It will reopen on Saturday, November 11 (see map below).

In addition, demolition will now commence on the former Birmingham Conservatoire, following its move to a brand new home in Jennens Road, and Chamberlain House next door.

As part of the demolition, one lane of Paradise Circus Queensway will be closed southbound from Sandpits to Suffolk Street Queensway from November 13 until next summer.

There will also be weekend closures of both lanes of Paradise Circus Queensway southbound on January 13 and 14, January 20 and 21 and January 27 and 28.

These will be in effect from midnight on the Friday night through to 5am on Monday morning.

Internal works to strip out and dismantle the buildings has already started but a 32-metre high crane will move in to raze the complex.

Map shows new pedestrian access at the Paradise project in Birmingham, coming into effect on November 11, 2017

Developers said 90 per cent of waste, around 19,000 tonnes, from this stage of demolition would be recycled and it is due for completion next summer.

The demolition work will also enable the reopening of the main entrance to Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, in Chamberlain Square.

Rob Groves, regional director of Argent which is project managing Paradise, said: "With One Chamberlain Square now clearly visible on the city skyline and Two Chamberlain Square following, work is steaming ahead on the enhanced public realm.

"These latest demolition works will support the next phase of development and represent yet another key milestone in this transformative project.

"Paradise is, without doubt, one of the most complex regeneration projects we have worked on, not least due to its geographical position, requiring enormous patience and flexibility from businesses and local people in coping with the changes to pedestrian routes, for which we are grateful.

Aerial image shows Centenary Way being prepared for reopening

 

"With the Great Charles Street road improvements and new pedestrian crossing now complete, the Centenary Way route reopening better connects Chamberlain and Victoria Squares to Centenary Square and Broad Street again.

"This really is a landmark moment for the development and indeed for the people of Birmingham."

The overall Paradise project comprises plans for eight office buildings and a new hotel on land around Chamberlain Square.

Work has started on the first two buildings - called One and Two Chamberlain Square - and plans were recently revealed for the third element, a 13-storey building called One Centenary Way.

If given the green light, this will be built on the site of the old conservatoire and Fletchers Walk shopping precinct.

View full mobile page