Birmingham City Council and Southside BID have released the latest pictures of the planned new-look Hurst Street area, which aims to transform the heart of the district in front of Birmingham Hippodrome into a vibrant public square.

The new images of Hippodrome Square show how the development will look from Hurst Street, with the space being available for everyday activities, markets and special events. The plans also include previously shared imagery of a 40ft traditional Chinese arch, to be installed on Ladywell Walk as phase 2 of the project.

Regarded as one of the most diverse areas of the city, the planned development will connect Birmingham’s thriving theatres with Chinatown, the Gay Village and the upcoming Smithfield regeneration, all acting as drivers of footfall to the district.

Existing cycle routes will be retained in the current plans, with access to New Street Station improved through increased separation between vehicles and cyclists along Hill Street.

Other proposed changes include new lighting to free up the space in the square for events, installation of trees to increase environmental and health benefits, plus widened footpaths.

Work on the regeneration project is due to commence in spring/summer 2020, subject to necessary approvals. Public consultations will take place between July 17 and July 19, and all views can be shared via an online survey, found on the council’s website.

Julia Robinson, manager of Southside BID, said: “Well known as one of the most diverse and creative areas of Birmingham, Southside BID supports a diverse range of businesses. This truly unique public space will create a cultural heart for Southside to further promote the area whilst celebrating and highlighting a huge range of local talent.

Not only will this be a great opportunity to attract new visitors and tourists to the Southside district, it will also increase dwell time and provide an exciting new space for events, festivals and entertainment to take place and act as a magnet to drive footfall.”

James Wong, chairman of the Chinese Festival Committee and director of Chung Ying Group, said: “Hippodrome Square and the Chinese Arch have been in our plans for a long while, and we’re glad that work could be starting early next year.

“This project will be a true celebration of Chinese culture, and could become a landmark for the entire city.”

For all details on the development, and to share your views, please visit www.birmingham.gov.uk/southsidepr and for more information on the work Southside BID carries out please visit www.enjoysouthside.co.uk