Towards the end of 2014, PWA was appointed by Harvest to develop detailed proposals for the site and the retail and leisure elements of the project in particular following the grant of outline consent in 2015.
Following extensive remediation of this highly contaminated site between 2014 and 2016 the redevelopment will feature circa 250,000 sq ft of retail and leisure buildings including a large new Sainsbury’s store on stilts. Retail units with tenants to include Marks & Spencer, Next and JD Sports and food & beverage units include Nando’s, a petrol filling station and parking for 860 cars.
The Worcester & Birmingham Canal is a key feature of the development with a new canal-side square and footbridge which will link the site to the centre of Selly Oak for pedestrians and cyclists. A greenway will complete this route across the southern end of the site and be legally protected for the possible re-instatement of the canal link, with infrastructure works being carried out as part of the development in order to facilitate this.
Piper Whitlock is Lead Architect on the project acting for Harvest and also for the main contractor Interserve on the Design & Build contract which also includes an 18 storey student accommodation scheme designed by Glenn Howells Architects, the two firms working closely together to ensure optimum coordination throughout all stages.
The Sainsbury store features a striking glazed movement atrium while much of the buildings elevations are clad in vertical timber strips. The retail terrace has an extensive covered arcade which reflect a massing of pavilions and loggias along its length. Building materials reflect the pavilion buildings and are to be clad in ceramic, granite and timber with metal claddings to the rear elevations.
Construction works started in August 2017 and the retail and leisure works will complete in the latter part of 2018 followed by the Unite student accommodation building in summer 2019.
A BREEAM rating of Very Good is targeted.