Birmingham’s New Street station is to receive £400m of public money in a revamp that will help appease businesses and local residents who had long interpreted its decrepitude as a sign of government indifference. Financial Times
Delays to funding of the Gateway scheme, expected to cost £550m in total, had sparked growing irritation among Birmingham business leaders in recent months. This was most acute during celebrations in London over the £800m refurbishment of St Pancras, seen as having relatively little value for people outside the south-east. Redeveloping New Street is an over-riding priority for city figures, who regard it as a poor advertisement for the West Midlands.
The Department for Transport will provide £160m on top of £128m set aside in last year’s rail white paper. Advantage West Midlands, the regional development agency, will put up £100m.
The plan is to demolish the Pallasades shopping centre that sits over the station and build new retail space to the south. This will allow the construction of a glass roof, admitting light to the previously Stygian confines of the platforms.