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Birmingham Pupils Set To See City Designs Unveiled

Subscribe to RSS RSSMonday, 17th May, 2010

A group of Birmingham school pupils have helped re-design a popular public area in the City.

The 11 pupils - aged between 14 and 17 - from Aston, Lozells and Newtown worked with Birmingham City University and the urban regeneration partnership, Urban Living, to create a series of suggested designs for the remodelling of Aston Six Ways Island.

Dr Noha Nasser, Director of the Centre for Urban Design Outreach and Skills at Birmingham City University, explains: ?This pilot project targeted 14-18 year olds living and learning around the Aston Six Ways Island to jointly design a new shared public space. We felt it really important to give these young people a voice and have a say in the development of their local area.

We were delighted how the students tackled the project; they worked really hard to engage with the local community, seeking advice on what local residents would like to see the area eventually look like. They had clearly thought about what makes meaningful public spaces, carefully considering ways of improving community relations through shared spaces and uses, and they showed a sound knowledge of urban design principles that balance pedestrian and vehicle needs.?

Rebecca Chim aged 17 from King Edwards School in Handsworth was one of the students involved in the project. She said: ?This was a great project to work on. We all worked well as a team to come up with a design for the island and space around it. Having advice from professional architects was really useful and has helped me decide that architecture is a career I'd like to seriously consider after school.?

Nick Corbett, Director of Urban Design and Enterprise at Urban Living said: ?Urban Living commissioned this project after local residents told us they don?t like using the subways under the Six Ways junction, because they feel unsafe. We agreed that the existing junction really needs to be redesigned, to create a better environment for pedestrians and also a more inspiring gateway into Newtown, Lozells and Aston. The students have produced excellent design work, showing a much more people-friendly highway layout?.

The pupils? designs will be unveiled at an award ceremony taking place at Birmingham City University on Friday 14 May. Mashuq Ally, Head of Equality and Diversity, Birmingham City Council will be the guest of honour at the event.