Tunnel closures reminder

Friday saw the closure of the A38 tunnels in Birmingham City Centre where essential upgrading work is now being carried out until September 1st.

Despite the expected congestion on the first day of the closure, the area is well prepared for coping during the period of closure. Localised diversions will be in place for motorists and there will be alternative transport for commuters.

Overall, the tunnels upgrade will include introducing a new ventilation system, installing new security and communications systems, replacing electrical systems and refurbishing plant rooms and pumping stations.

Last year, the tunnel closure actually resulted in many car drivers switching to alternative transport methods, which can only be good for the environment – despite the initial inconvenience. However, the 2013 closures resulted in some Broad Street businesses complaining that the Council’s communication about the matter and the alternative routes available was less than ideal.

The development of one of the city centre’s most important routes is essential but if any of the businesses on Broad Street have concerns, please contact me (Mike Olley) on 07834 323100.

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Revolution Bar’s Box of Tricks

Revolution Bar on Broad Street has added a bit of creativity to the customer experience, with the introduction of their new Mojito Box.

This is a fantastic cocktail experience where, following being shown how to make a mojito by a trained staff member, customers can have fun trying it themselves. This not only means customers can have a new experience on the night, but go away with the ability to cut a dash at home making cocktails!

Revolution Bar already boasts a fantastic cocktail menu, but it is great to be able to add something innovative to the mix. Based at the top of Broad Street, their location is ideal for corporate bookings too – click here to find out more about what’s on offer there.

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Broad Street welcomes new EastZEast restaurant

Broad St BID extends a warm welcome to the seventh EastZEast restaurant to open in the UK.

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Already known as ‘the home of Punjabi cooking’, the restaurant is making its long anticipated arrival in Birmingham with a grand launch event at its new Broad Street base on Monday 4th August.

Owners, the Raja brothers of Bradford, have retained all the winning formulas that have not only shot the original EastZEast on Manchester’s Princess Street to the top of the tree in Punjabi Cuisine, but more importantly kept it there. The restaurant will be the ultimate in style, glamour and ambiance, with no expense spared when it comes to attention to detail.

Owner Kabir Rayman says, “Birmingham is not only the capital of the Midlands by name – but also the Midlands (if not the UK’s) capital of the great British balti. Birmingham is also a hub of vibrant new economic activity, so it was the obvious place by far to open the doors to our newest home of our multi-award winning Punjabi Cuisine.“

The Broad Street area already boasts a vibrant hub of restaurants and eateries, and the arrival of EastZEast will only help further enhance this.

Situated at the top of Broad Street, EastZEast opens to the public on Tuesday 5th August.

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BID helps accelerate new transport links

A funding package has been announced that includes the final stage of backing for the first Birmingham Sprint rapid bus tram line from the City Centre through to Quinton, via Broad Street – thanks to the continual lobbying of BID for a rapid transport system.

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This road to success began with a commitment to lobby for this under the BID2 manifesto back in 2009. Closely working with other BIDS, as well as Centro and the Council since then to develop proposals has now paid off.

Gary Taylor, Executive Director at Altitude Real Estate, said:

“This investment is great news and is in direct support of BID’s plans for better connectivity for the Broad Street area. The announcement and timescales run in close parallel to the planned development of Paradise Forum which in itself will provide much improved pedestrian connectivity.”

In related news, Centro and the Council have been planning to extend the Metro to Centenary Square but just last week, rather unexpectedly got funding from the Government to take it up Broad Street, to Five Ways.

Connecting the area, as well as people, is therefore high on the agenda. Gary concluded:

“It’s fantastic that we have delivered against a major pledge we made in 2009. All in all, Broad Street and Westside are about to become a much more integrated part of the City Centre.”

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Celebrating the district’s food diversity this weekend…

This weekend (18th & 19th July) sees the return of the CBD Food Festival, taking place in Victoria Square. In its fourth year now, the Colmore BID organised event showcases the fantastic food and drink offerings within the Colmore Business District (CBD).

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Taking place in Victoria Square this Friday and Saturday between 11am and 7pm on each day, the event will feature 24 local businesses which will prepare and sell signature dishes for between £150 and £5. All businesses taking part are based within ten minutes of Victoria Square so this event provides a genuine platform for driving footfall and repeat business on the back of the tasters they sell this weekend.

The 2014 festival sees the return of some regulars, including Purnell’s, The Old Joint Stock and Hotel Du Vin. However, mixing things up will be newcomers such as Indian restaurant, Isaacs, as well as Pure Bar & Kitchen.

And it’s not just eating that is on the agenda. There will also be outdoor theatre, cookery demonstrations and performances from members of the Young REP, The REP’s youth theatre group.

To find out more about the festival click here.

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