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This Is The New Retail Concept Hammerson Plan To Trial In Birmingham

Martineau Galleries site, rethought

What do you do if you’re a retail specialist in an era when retail property feels like an albatross around many landlord’s necks?

On the day that the sprawling Arcadia retail empire faced its Waterloo as a company voluntary arrangement struggled to be accepted, Hammerson thought it had the answer, and it is going to trial it in Birmingham.

The retail-focused REIT said it will launch its new City Quarters concept at the 7.5-acre Martineau Galleries site, promising 1.4M SF of workspace and 1,300 residential units. Hammerson were silent on the volume of retail space planned.

Its bright idea is to diversify beyond just retail. Hammerson’s said its City Quarters concept will create vibrant mixed-use neighbourhoods beyond pure retail to curate and deliver homes, workspace, leisure, cultural and educational space around its existing flagship retail destinations, in thriving locations around the UK and Ireland.

Public consultation is underway for first major scheme brought forward as part of the concept.

The scheme will also deliver a signature gateway to Birmingham from the proposed Curzon Street terminal (part of the proposed HS2) and high-quality public realm, including a new public square and boulevard.

The site currently includes the Square Shopping Centre, King’s Parade and Dale End (High Street) car park. It forms a significant part of Birmingham city centre, with links to the wider area, including the High Street which links Martineau Galleries to the Bullring Estate.

Following the public consultation, Hammerson intends to submit an outline planning application to Birmingham City Council later this year, with the aim of starting works in 2022.