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Urban Design Compendium

Birmingham Inner Ring Road (206)

206 - Improving the pedestrian experience

The Birmingham Inner Ring Road was completed in 1971.The aim was to remove trunk road traffic from the citycore by building a 3.5 mile road around the centre, punctuated by roundabouts at seven junctions. Although seen as a classic improvement of its time, the 'Concrete Collar' is now seen as an impenetrable barrier between the city cantre and the surrounding neighbourhoods. In particular for pedestrians who are required to use the hostile and intimidating psubways at the roundabouts.

Since 1988 Birmingham City Council has adopted a policy of remodelling of the ring road. This has been undertaken to recreate links between the city centre and the neighbouring areas; enable city centre activity to spread into those areas; improve the pedestrian environment across the city, with an emphasis on shifting vehicular movements out to the middle ring road.

Some of the most notable aspects of the scheme are lower Paradise Circus to create a new pedestrian link to Centenary Square and the International Convention Centre; re-create the Old Square as a pedestrian space on the route from the City Centre to the Law Coutrs area; remodel Smallbrook Queensway, including the removal of subways, to create a much improved pedestrian link to the Chinese quarter of the city.

Other Information

  • Project Team: Birmingham City Council
  • Contact: Department of Planning & Architecture, Birmingham City Council, Baskerville House, Broad Street, Birmingham B1 2NA


UDC Section - Creating the Urban Structure / The Movement Framework /  /ace  / /

New routes improve the Pedestrian experience in Birmingham.

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