Big City Plan
BIG CITY PLAN!
Birmingham is a big city right in the centre of England. Its population is around one million but just over 2.5 million if you include the outer area of the West Midlands.
Compare this to Sydney's 4.2 million! Sydney has been allowed to sprawl endlessly outwards, building houses and roads on top of our prime agricultural land...madness! In Birmingham, they created green spaces around the city which stops this.
Twenty years ago, people made jokes about 'Brum' (as the city is known), but since then the city has been modernised, its old buildings turned into vibrant restaurants and the city has attracted much business investment.
Not content with its new image, Birmingham is now taking itself to the next level and is about to a undergo major re-development through its 'Big City Plan' which plans to revitalise the city centre over the next twenty years. £10 billion has been allocated for the redevelopment of the city centre (roughly $22 billion Australian dollars).
This plan is so good that its just won the BEX 2008 International Award for Best Masterplan, beating others from Abu Dhabi, Singapore, Genoa and many more.
About the Big City Plan:
The whole plan centres around asking the people of Birmingham what they want from their city. Birmingham City Council then draws up the plan and will employ professionals from the fields of town planning, urban design, movement, economics, communications, consultation, property, delivery, legal, culture, leisure and sustainability to ensure they get it 'just right'.
Take a look at this clip about the Big City Plan:
The plan is based on the recommendations of Professor Michael Parkinson of the European Institute for Urban Affairs.
Don't know much about Birmingham? click here for a short film:
The plan will look at:
Brum's 'Floozie in the Jacuzzi'The plans will make Birmingham a low-carbon city by becoming a greener, smarter and more
beautiful city centre over the next twenty years. It will look at biofuels, waste and transport systems
as well as using educational programs to reduce energy consumption.
1. A 60% reduction in CO2 emissions produced in the city by 2026.
2. Saving 100,000 tonnes of CO2 this year and 130,000 in 2010/11.
3. Limiting the citys ecological footprint to its 2001 level.
4. Reducing average residual household waste.5. By 2026, at least 40% of household waste recycled.
6. By 2010, decent standards for all social housing.
7. By 2026, improved quality and choice of housing decent standard for virtually all housing,
with efficient heating systems and insulation in line with the best UK cities.
We think this is such an exciting plan that we're going to be following it closely and will give you more
detailed information in our next update. Hopefully many cities around the world will be watching closely too.
Inside the 'Silver Slug' (Selfridges)By Alastair Wadlow