warwick bar, birmingham

Project Brief: Design a sustainable Master plan for key Birmingham Historic Waterside site for ISIS Waterside Regeneration – international competition win.

This competition-winning scheme seeks to create an intimate network of carefully crafted streets and squares, connected to Birmingham’s canals and forgotten river. The strategy for a memorable public waterspace is to reveal the layers of the site’s rich industrial history, where buildings grow out of a complex landscape. These historic layers are manifested in the form of a ‘diagram’, which is used to carve into the site and influence the form of the buildings. This promotes a sense of place, through diversity, without compromising the central vision for the project.

The site carries some intriguing challenges, including the conflicting demands of conservation, ecology and the desire to achieve a high density solution. Another principal objective has been to create a diverse mixed community, which seamlessly knits into the rest of Eastside, Digbeth and Bordesley. It gives rise to a vibrant, high profile destination, exploiting physical and perceptual linkage opportunities with surrounding initiatives. 

The initial studies indicate up to 500 mixed-tenure homes, appealing to a range of end-users, including families and the elderly, as well as key-workers and more conventional purchasers. Proposals are currently being tested to create new cultural attractions to sit alongside MADE, the region’s architecture centre. There will also be business space, to meet the demands of the local creative community, as well as cafes, bars, shops, restaurants and a boutique hotel. The scheme will be an opportunity to enhance local amenity provision, including healthcare and affordable childcare.


Project carried out by K4/ Kinetic during John Shakeshaft’s time as Director.