Complex structural engineering to cope with a long forgotten canal has been completed as Birmingham’s latest ‘apart-hotel’ takes shape.
Work on the £18 million Staycity complex in Newhall Square is now progressing quickly after major challenges in preparing the land on the site of the old Museum of Science and Technology.
Consulting civil and structural engineers CWA had to overcome the combined obstacles of canals, listed buildings and nearly 200 years of industrial processes to carry out all of the civil and structural engineering work. The project will become Birmingham’s first purpose-built apart-hotel but will join a host of others currently being created.
The Post reported last week that the nearby Bloc Hotel in Caroline Street is planning to add a further 30 apart-hotel rooms in an adjoining vacant building, while work on an apart-hotel at the Beneficial Building near Paradise Circus is in the pipeline.
Jim O’Donnell, director of CWA, said the project had been one of the firm’s most challenging to date as the building was being wrapped around the Grade II-listed Whitmore Warehouse and fronts the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal.
Mr O’Donnell said: “It is built over the former Whitmore Arm canal branch which passed under Charlotte Street when the site was occupied by the Elkington Works where chrome plating was first developed in the 1840s.
“In civil engineering terms, there were many challenges to be overcome. Hundreds of years of industrial processes combined with difficult ground conditions at the site and the proximity of canals resulted in the need for sensitive work and we worked closely with the Environment Agency throughout.
“We have managed to overcome the various challenges and this will, I’m sure, be a first-class facility for Birmingham,” he said.
The 178-room five-storey Staycity hotel is being project-managed by Elias Topping for RO Real Estate.