Parklets make way for Commonwealth Games

25 April 2022

After a successful 2-year trial, work begins this week to remove the parklets in Colmore Business District, making way for the Commonwealth Games, which will be using the District’s streets as a route for the marathon.

Parklets outside of 200 Degrees on Colmore Row and Gaucho on Church Street will be removed on Monday 25 April, with the one outside Primitivo on Barwick Street being removed on Thursday 23 June. The parklets on Waterloo Street outside Theatrix and Purecraft Bar and Kitchen will be moved later this year to make way for the works on Colmore Row and Waterloo Street.

The parklets were originally installed during the summer of 2020, the peak of the Covid pandemic, in a bid to create new community spaces and provide nearby hospitality venues with more facilities to serve customers. Each parklet has capacity for around 20 people within four defined areas; seating with a low table for coffee and drinks, an area for dining with a high table, standing room only and an area that was specifically designed to be accessible for wheelchair users.

Michele Wilby, CEO of Colmore BID, said: “Parklets have been a key ambition of ours for a number of years. It was clear that during the pandemic the need for more outdoor space was of the utmost importance, so the programme became a top priority as we worked closely with Birmingham City Council and EventMen to deliver a suitable solution. Over the past 2 years, we have installed 7 parklets within the District and they really have become part of the furniture as people use them to eat their lunch, grab a coffee, meet with friends and of course enjoy our fantastic hospitality venues.

“While the majority of the parklets will not be around for the Commonwealth Games, the intention is for them to return at a later date.

“Greening the District remains one of our key objectives, outlined in our business plan. The recent launch of our Going Green Masterplan has provided us with further thoughts of how exactly the parklets and the public realm can evolve. We can’t wait for these spaces to return with a new lease of life.”

The parklets were adorned with artwork from a number of local artists. In the short term, these pieces will be put into storage while options are explored to re-install them in alternative locations in the District. The plants within the parklets are currently being re-homed with the nursery that originally supplied them.