Your BID, Your Levy, Your Future
Colmore Business District is the Business Improvement District (BID) that covers the commercial heart of Birmingham. Our company, Colmore BID, provides improvement projects and services to over 500 business, who employ over 35,000 people and occupy over 5 million square feet of office space.
Established in 2009 by a group of forward thinking local businesses, Colmore BID has delivered a broad range of projects. These range from high-profile projects such as our award-winning Colmore Food Festival, which provides a showcase for our incredible hospitality sector and attracts over 30,000 people each year, and our award-winning public realm schemes such as Church Street Square and Colmore Square, right down to projects that deliver real change on the ground, such as our Security and Ambassador service and our programme of deep cleaning, and floral features.
BIDs are democratically elected companies which run for a term that usually lasts five years. As Colmore BID comes to the end of its second term, we are asking businesses to support us again to continue to ensure the District continues to be a high quality, internationally attractive place for business, and to help us to be ambitious from 2019 – 2024.
- 1 October 2018: Notification of Ballot sent to businesses
- 15 October 2018: Ballot papers sent out to businesses
- 10 November 2018: Any proxy voters must be appointed by this date
- 14 November 2018: Replacement ballot papers sent to those who have requested them
- 20 November 2018: Voting ends at 5.00 pm
- 21 November 2018: Result announced
About the Ballot
In October, we will be asking businesses to vote YES in our BID 3 Ballot. The ballot is a postal ballot, run by independent scrutineers Electoral Reform Services (ERS). On 15 October, ERS will post out a ballot pack to businesses. Where we have a named contact, the pack will be addressed to that person. Where we do not have a contact, it will be addressed to “The Owner / Occupier”.
If you do not receive your pack by 22 October, please contact us.
The Pack will be in an envelope that states “Ballot Papers enclosed”. Some businesses may receive more than one (for more details on why, click here).
This pack is not a circular. Please ensure it is given to the appropriate person.
If you receive more than one pack, this is not a mistake; please do not throw the other packs away. Please click here for details on why you have more than one pack.
Inside the pack you will find:
- Your ballot paper
- A freepost envelope for you to return your paper
- A copy of the Colmore BID Business Plan 2019 – 2024.
The ballot paper will ask you whether you are in favour of a BID, covering a list of streets, to last for five years. Please cast your vote and return your paper using the envelope provided.
Your ballot paper must be received by ERS by no later than 5.00 pm on 20 November.
If you have more than one paper, you must return each one. Click here to find out more.
The result of the ballot will be announced on 21 November, and ERS will write to you to let you know the outcome.
Why should I vote YES?
Colmore BID has run for almost 10 years. In that time we have played a key part in the transformation of the area from the commercial quarter of Birmingham to a District which is seen as a prime destination for both business and leisure.
We’ve made both meaningful and long-term changes to the physical nature of the District. Our programme of street cleaning and city dressing has helped to keep the area clean and attractive throughout the year. Our public realm schemes have given a legacy to the investment made by businesses, transforming Church Street and Colmore Square, and our smart investment of £1.4m has seen a 700% ROI, bringing a raft of new schemes to improve the area even further.
We’ve worked hard to keep the area safe. Our Security Service and our Ambassadors work closely with partners in the city to help reduce the impact on businesses of the sharp increase in homelessness and anti-social behaviour, and we’re working strategically with Birmingham City Council, the West Midlands Combined Authority and West Midlands Police to provide meaningful solutions to this national issue. We’re working with local charities too, providing in-kind support and raising over £30,000 for Sifa Fireside, who provide hot food and access to a range of services to rough sleepers in the city.
Most people will know us through Colmore Food Festival; our award-winning signature event that has been running for 8 years. Not only is this a spectacular show-case for our hospitality sector, it is one of the key culinary events in the city and a highlight for many of us who work in the District. But this isn’t the only event we do; we run, on average, 36 events a year, including markets, cinema screenings, craft and wellbeing events. Almost all of these are, like the Colmore Food Festival, free to attend. Where there is a charge, this is donated to Sifa Fireside.
You can read more about our achievements so far in our Business Plan. All of our work is done in addition to what Birmingham City Council provide and all of this additionality would be lost if there was no BID.
But we aren’t just looking backwards; we’re looking forwards as well. We have held 21 focus groups, and engaged in 150 hours of one-to-one meetings with local businesses, which we have distilled into a range of exciting and ambitious projects that we would like to deliver in our third term.
We want to build on what already works, such as expanding the provision of our Security Service to provide even greater assistance to businesses and further improving the Colmore Food Festival. We want to be bold by looking at how we tackle the big challenges like air quality and connectivity. We want to support our business community, looking at how we can provide more assistance to our SMEs and work to raise the profile of the District even more. And we want to celebrate what makes Colmore Business District special, whether that’s by being innovative in how we improve our public realm, by providing even more support to our hospitality sector, or by providing even more enhancements to the experience of those who work here.
We want to do all this and more, but we can’t, unless you vote YES before 20 November.
Our Business Plan reviews our performance over the last five years, and sets out our ambitions for our next term. Click here to download a copy.
Click here to view the baseline services provided by Birmingham City Council.
Click here to view the baseline services provided by Birmingham and City Council in relation to Highways.
Click here to view the baseline services provided by West Midlands Police.
Click here to view a draft of the Operating Agreement, which explains how the BID and the City Council intend to work together during the term.