Help shape the future of Smithfield Birmingham

  • 15 Mar 2022
People in Birmingham are being asked to help shape the future of the heart of the city, as once in a generation plans for Smithfield Birmingham begin to take shape.
A series of public drop-in events will be held starting this month regarding proposals for the £1.9bn landmark regeneration project. Those plans include a new home for the city’s historic Bull Ring markets, an outstanding leisure and cultural area, a new festival square and landscaped park, integrated public transport, and thousands of new homes and community facilities. 

From late March, the project team will launch a major programme of public consultation with market traders, local people and stakeholders.  This will provide an opportunity to directly engage and shape the future of the site, beginning with a series of drop-in events. 

Proposals for Smithfield are being prepared by Birmingham City Council’s appointed partner on the scheme, which is Lendlease, an international real estate and investment group with core expertise in shaping cities and creating strong and connected communities. The 17 hectares development will anchor an expanded City Centre, helping to accelerate a wider transformation of Birmingham and support long-term economic and social prosperity within the region. 

Councillor Ian Ward, Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “Smithfield Birmingham is a real once in a lifetime opportunity to create a new community in the heart of our city – and we are really excited to be working with Lendlease Europe, who have an internationally proven track record for bringing forward major developments like this. 

“This £1.9bn development means jobs, homes and opportunities for people across this city and Smithfield Birmingham will become a shining example of inclusive economic growth that will create a real legacy in the heart of Birmingham. We’re keen that this scheme also celebrates our heritage and the historic Bull Ring Markets will be central to this development." 

James Amos, Development Director at Lendlease, said: “Building on both the city’s rich trading history and its exciting future as an international destination, we’re committed to ensuring Smithfield will be created and shaped by the hands of local people from across Birmingham’s diverse communities. This first phase of consultation is all about listening to people and gathering as many thoughts and ideas as we can to help us develop our proposals.   

“We’re particularly keen to hear people’s views about how we can best retain the history and legacy of the iconic markets in our new designs.  The markets are inseparable from the city centre, a core part of its identity in the past and the future – so we want to know what they mean to the people of the city so that we can build on that legacy within our plans. Two of our city’s greatest assets are our diversity and creativity and we want as many people as possible to come together and tell us what they would like created as part of our plans.” 

Members of the Lendlease team will on hand to answer questions and listen to comments at the events.  These are being held on: 
  • Saturday 26 March, 10AM-4PM 
    St Martin’s Church, Edgbaston Street, B5 5BB 
  • Tuesday 29 March, 1PM-7PM 
    St Martin’s Church, Edgbaston Street, B5 5BB 
  • Monday 4 April, 3PM-8PM 
    Birmingham Hippodrome, Hurst Street, B5 4TB 
All of the information about Smithfield will also be available online at, where people will be able to share their ideas and make sure they play a part in shaping the future of their city. 

Celebrating the history of Birmingham and its roots as the ‘city of a thousand trades’, the centrepiece of Smithfield will be a vibrant new home for the iconic indoor, outdoor and Rag markets, which will be a colourful and lively destination with a distinct day and night-time feel. 

Smithfield will be a dynamic place with something for everyone.  At the heart of this is a festival square and cultural spaces that will allow Birmingham’s musical and artistic communities to come together and put on live performances for all ages. 

Alongside this will be business and leisure space, including hotels, cafes, restaurants and bars, helping to create a range of new employment opportunities with an estimated 8,000 jobs.  

The plans also include space for over 3,000 sustainable and modern homes in a green setting, supported by a range of community facilities and Smithfield Park, which will improve wellbeing and biodiversity.  Major improvements to accessibility will stitch the area into the wider city, including the creation of new and improved walking and cycling routes, as well as a green pedestrian boulevard helping to connect the Bull Ring to the wider city centre and sustainable transport connections. 

Following the drop-in events, Lendlease will continue to develop proposals for the Smithfield masterplan which will include working with a specially appointed youth panel and market traders to shape designs for the iconic new market featuring public art.  The plans will be presented to the public in the new year, ahead of a planning application being submitted to Birmingham City Council next summer.