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Doone Silver wins approval for tallest tower in Birmingham

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Doone Silver Architects has won permission to demolish John Madin’s Natwest tower in Birmingham and replace it with what is to become the city’s tallest building

Earlier today (6 August) Birmingham City Council approved the new 26 storey (102.5m) office-block at 103 Colmore Row for Sterling Property Ventures and Rockspring Property Investment Managers.

The decision finally spells the end for Madin’s 1975 city centre block which has been empty for more than a decade.

The steel, aluminium and glazed tower will house 18,500m² of offices and nearly 1,500m² of leisure space and will feature a terrace on the 18th level.

There are also plans for a 800m² restaurant at the top of the tower in a ‘lantern-like’ structure which will ‘offer 360 degree views across the city’.

Demolition of the existing, concrete-clad building is expected to start later this month.

‘Colmore Row will be a landmark addition to Birmingham’s emerging skyline and a strong indication of the city’s vibrant economy,’ said John Silver, director of Doone Silver Architects.

Project data

Architect: Doone Silver Architects
Client: Sterling Property Ventures & Rockspring Property Investment Managers
Location: Birmingham, UK
Status: Planning consent
Dates: Start on site September 2015 - completion spring 2018
Area: 30,322m² GEA
Structure: Davies Maguire & Whitby
M&E: Watkins Payne
Planning: GW Planning
Costs: Quantum
Landscape: Robert Townshend

John Madin's NatWest Tower, Birmingham

John Madin’s NatWest Tower, Birmingham

Previous story (AJ 19.03.15)

Madin’s Birmingham tower saved…for now

Plans to demolish John Madin’s 22-storey former Natwest tower in Birmingham have been put on hold

Earlier this week London-based Doone Silver Architects unveiled its proposed replacement for the building at 103 Colmore Row with a formal planning submission expected in May.

However, an application to flatten the 1975 city centre block had already been lodged and was heard earlier today (19 March).

In a blow to the development team, Birmingham City Council’s planning committee said it needed reassurance the plans for a 26-storey steel, aluminium and glazed tower housing 18,500m² of offices and nearly 1,500m² of leisure space would be formally submitted before it would give the go-ahead for demolition.

Developers Sterling Property Ventures and Rockspring were hoping to start demolition of the skyscraper, which has been vacant since 2003, next month, while simultaneously seeking planning permission for the replacement commercial building.

Sterling Property Ventures construction director Peter Graham said: ‘We are extremely disappointed by this decision, particularly since the application was recommended for approval by the council’s officers.’

Geoff Wright, of GW Planning, adviser to Sterling and Rockspring, said that the new plans were currently out for consultation and an application was expected to be made in May.

“We had hoped to begin the demolition before then, in order to truncate the build programme. Regrettably, this will now be set back but we will work with Birmingham City Council to overcome their concerns and expedite development.”

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