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Birmingham Metro Area For Birmingham, Wolverhampton and the West Midlands.



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Old November 23rd, 2012, 09:48 PM   #121
NeilM
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I have to say disappointing, was hoping we might get something around 100m here.

It looks ok, but it is only outline planning, but that design deserves something much taller, I'm going to call it stumpy as it doesn't look right at 90m.

On a positive, at least there are now plans to get this moving.
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 10:02 PM   #122
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heres the pics from the app, worth renaming the thread woody?

image hosted on flickr

4 by sefton 66, on Flickr




image hosted on flickr

3 by sefton 66, on Flickr
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 10:37 PM   #123
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I love it!!
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 10:56 PM   #124
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when will the height be confirmed?

would of preferd original but glad to see an average tower happen
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 11:09 PM   #125
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minimum height will be about 80m maximum height 90-95m
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 11:11 PM   #126
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Love the "curves" on this stumpy tower.

At least they could do is add an extra 10 metres to make it 100 metres.
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 11:37 PM   #127
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It's ok but nothing more. Distinctly average design and very very stumpy. It just isn't tall enough to make that broad a front look good. At that wisth it really needs another 30-40m to make it look as tall as it is. I don't really see the point of the 3 or 4 pillars on Snow Hill itself either. I know they're supposed to pay homage to the other 2 towers but when they're not consistent through the design they just look a bit odd. Either keep the sheet glass look of the front or the pillars look all the way round. The corner closest to the 2nd Snow Hill tower could do with a bit of re-shaping as well. It looks in those pictures like it just stops abruptly, not matching the curves on the rest of the building.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 02:11 AM   #128
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What a depressingly underwhelming outcome for a site that has been trumpeted for many years as a major gateway location to the city centre that would be deserving of a building of significant height.

Same old storey (pun intended).
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Old November 24th, 2012, 02:24 AM   #129
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To be honest guys, this seems a lot more cleaner and neater than the last proposal, and the entrance is in a sensible place and that's much less messy now. Whilst it won't set the world alight.. I think this will work really well here... I just hope that a big corporation gets to put its name on the tower in a few years time.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 03:28 AM   #130
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Except that under 100m, and certainly not with those rather chunky proportions it really isn't a tower. If it were half the width then maybe but there's not really much towering about this unless you're right underneath it. I can imagine that even from just over the road it will be dominating but not towering...and that's what I really feel is missing here. Not every building should be, or needs to be, a signature building....but this one IMO does. And this isn't it at the moment.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 03:09 PM   #131
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It looks rather nice and modern though, i really like it.

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Old November 24th, 2012, 03:53 PM   #132
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Looks promising. Better to have something realistic than another pie in the sky proposal which is unlikely to ever go ahead.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 04:51 PM   #133
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It's only outline and I'll wait for more detailed renders before passing full comment, but at present I don't love it.

My main concern is that the view from Constitution Hill is far too wide and creates a wall. The tower proposals, whilst still acting as something of a barrier, were broken up with the break between them and the steps, and the height variation. Not only does it act as a visual barrier, it's also poor in terms of permeability north-south, something which should be encouraged if the JQ or Gun Quarter are to properly mesh with the city centre. There's a pedestrian route through the building onto Snow Hill Queensway, but that's open estate hours only.

Other negative points for me include:
-The public realm has been reduced at the back, and so much of that now sits under the building's overhang.
-The maximum height isn't an issue for me. The minimum is however, as I feel the stepped design of the overall site would be lost.


Movement on the site is of course most welcome, and should the materials be high quality I don't think it would necessarily be a bad buildings (based on rough indicative images), but I feel it could better relate to its surroundings.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 10:11 PM   #134
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Its a mediocre office block!! not ground breaking, not a Icon. Its distinctively average as a design of a building goes and to be honest it's just another "meh" project which Birmingham is now being littered with.

Deeply depressing and hugely concerning!
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Old November 24th, 2012, 10:28 PM   #135
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lets hope that it is atleast 91m which would make it fourth tallest if built now but what position would it be if all the approved towers where built?
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Old November 24th, 2012, 10:37 PM   #136
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ecological View Post
Deeply depressing and hugely concerning!
Get a grip! It's not a world disaster (like the global economy)
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Old November 24th, 2012, 11:02 PM   #137
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In the context of "what might have been" 2 or 3 years back, then yes, this current offering is distinctly average & underwhelming. But I guess that is one of the problems with original proposals of true skyscrapers adorning Birmingham skies.

We have had false dawns many times previously: The V building/Arena Central, Regal Tower, Beetham Tower et al. Some of these never saw the light of day, while others became reality but only after major concessions in height.

I grow tired of these wildly exaggerated proposals that raise our hopes that perhaps Birmingham will truly have a decent skyscraper to call its own. But all we get in the real world is compromise & averageness.

I think we're going to have to face reality and accept that the centre of Birmingham will only ever accommodate buildings of up to 150 meters at best. And as for this current proposal: on its own merits I guess it fits in well to a point, and is aesthetically pleasing. But it really doesn't offer anything in the way of originality; just another bookend to blandness I guess.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 11:17 PM   #138
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DE51GNR View Post
Get a grip! It's not a world disaster (like the global economy)
You're right of course, it's not. But in the context of this forum, is it not understandable that some of us are disappointed?

For the record, I don't think every building in Birmingham should be a skyscraper, and I agree with mikey23 when he says that maximum height isn't necessarily the most important factor.

It would be nice, just for once, to see one of these proposals for a building of significant height (by that I mean taller than anything that's been built in Birmingham for some time) come to fruition.

Off the top of my head, the following have all been proposed and then been mothballed (or delayed indefinitely): Arena Central, Broad Street Tower, VTP 200, V Tower, Snowhill Phase 3, Regal Tower, 103 Colmore Row (British Land), New Street Station Towers...

The last tower of any decent height to actually be delivered was the Radisson Holloway Circus Tower (which itself was a reduced version of what was proposed). So to see the cores start to go up for Glenn Howells' elegant and beautiful 'duo', only to then see them grind to a premature halt, and ultimately be replaced by a scheme like this, is desperately disappointing and maddeningly frustrating.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 11:31 PM   #139
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonny97 View Post
In the context of "what might have been" 2 or 3 years back, then yes, this current offering is distinctly average & underwhelming. But I guess that is one of the problems with original proposals of true skyscrapers adorning Birmingham skies.

We have had false dawns many times previously: The V building/Arena Central, Regal Tower, Beetham Tower et al. Some of these never saw the light of day, while others became reality but only after major concessions in height.

I grow tired of these wildly exaggerated proposals that raise our hopes that perhaps Birmingham will truly have a decent skyscraper to call its own. But all we get in the real world is compromise & averageness.

I think we're going to have to face reality and accept that the centre of Birmingham will only ever accommodate buildings of up to 150 meters at best. And as for this current proposal: on its own merits I guess it fits in well to a point, and is aesthetically pleasing. But it really doesn't offer anything in the way of originality; just another bookend to blandness I guess.
Funny, but as I was typing my response above, you were obviously echoing a lot (but not all) of my sentiments Sonny97!

I think what makes this so much more disappointing than some of the more 'fanciful' proposals we both cited above, is that IMO it was a stunningly elegant design but also a practical and deliverable one, it was conceived by a local architect's practice who knows the area intimately (Glenn Howells), IIRC the deal for the pre-let on the five star hotel in the shorter of the two towers was all but a done deal, the first two phases of Snowhill were also pre-let, and as we all know, the cores were going up.

It was just so tantalisingly close, and in fact DE51GNR's comment about the world economy was spot-on, because it seems the developer Ballymore suffered like a lot of Irish 'Celtic Tiger' companies by over reaching with it's ambitions that just weren't sustainable in the new world order...
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Old November 25th, 2012, 10:37 AM   #140
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonny97 View Post
We have had false dawns many times previously: The V building/Arena Central, Regal Tower, Beetham Tower et al. Some of these never saw the light of day, while others became reality but only after major concessions in height.

I grow tired of these wildly exaggerated proposals that raise our hopes that perhaps Birmingham will truly have a decent skyscraper to call its own. But all we get in the real world is compromise & averageness.
I get tired of them too. Fact is. Skyscrapers in cities like London are built out of necessity because the land density is high, and they are practical because the public transport infrastructure is there to support it.

In Birmingham, and Manchester*, Leeds et al. That density and public transport infrastructure simply doesn't exist in the same way as in London. That's why they never get off the ground at all, or if they do they get built as not "true" Skyscrapers like HCT.

I would frankly much rather see a pragmatic proposal with a good design for a building which will be used, create homes and/or jobs and improve our public realm than another ego over economics proposal which will never see the like of Day.

*Beetham Manchester is a true Skyscraper at 150m+ But the apartments have never been fully occupied just the same as Beetham Birmingham's haven't. IMHO both buildings symbolize some of the things which lead to the economic crash in the first place - overpriced and tiny 1/2 bedroom flats in over-ambitious tower blocks that were inter-city dick waving competitions.
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