Birmingham’s Paradise scheme runs out of cash

Aaron Morby 5 years ago
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Birmingham city council has run out of money for phase two of its ambitious £500m Paradise development.

Phase two of £500m scheme in limbo after funding swallowed up in phase one due to cost inflation
Phase two of £500m scheme in limbo after funding swallowed up in phase one due to cost inflation

The scheme has been hit by double market forecast construction inflation and the collapse of Carillion on a key project in phase one.

Minutes from the council audit committee have now revealed that funding for both phase one and two was swallowed up in key enabling works in the first phase.

The whole project is now in limbo as the city council tries to raise an extra £50m to deliver essential infrastructure works paving the way for phase two.

Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership was earmarked to invest a total of £88m to pay for demolition and infrastructure works but not building construction.

Of this £38m was budgeted for phase one and £28m for phase two. A further £22m will be released for Phase 3.

But council audit committee minutes reveal that phase one design development,  highways infrastructure, demolition and remediation costs required substantially more cash than originally planned and ate up the phase two allocation.

Now the private/public joint venture developer, PCLP, is asking for the extra cash to proceed with phase two.

This will see around 500,000 sq ft of space delivered in the One Centenary Way, Three Chamberlain Square office projects and new 4-star hotel buildings as well as Ratcliff Square.

The fresh funding call will support £2.3m of a Carillon liquidation claim, £17m CPO costs and £30m of infrastructure works.

A full business case report setting out the case for extra funding will be considered by the LEP and Council Cabinet in the New Year.

Eventually, the Paradise scheme, which is being managed by developer Argent, is expected to deliver 2m sq ft of new development.

This comprises up to 10 new Grade A office buildings and the 4 star hotel with up to 250 bedrooms.

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