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Transport
31 Dec 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

The Westside Metro Extension on Hagley Road, Edgbaston

The tail end of the Westside Metro extension is being built at Hagley Road in Edgbaston, just beyond Five Ways. It goes past the Morrisons supermarket and Starbucks Coffee and will end outside of the refurbished Fifty4 Hagley Road. As of late December 2020, they have laid the tracks but yet to build up the road or pavement surface around most of it. Photo gallery from 2017 - 2020.

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The Westside Metro Extension on Hagley Road, Edgbaston





The tail end of the Westside Metro extension is being built at Hagley Road in Edgbaston, just beyond Five Ways. It goes past the Morrisons supermarket and Starbucks Coffee and will end outside of the refurbished Fifty4 Hagley Road. As of late December 2020, they have laid the tracks but yet to build up the road or pavement surface around most of it. Photo gallery from 2017 - 2020.


Westside Metro Extension on Hagley Road

One day from the end of 2021 onwards, West Midlands Metro trams will emerge from the Five Ways underpass, coming from Broad Street. Then will come to the end of the extension on Hagley Road in Edgbaston, this takes it past the Morrisons supermarket, with Starbucks Coffee at the end. But will end at the tram stop that will be built outside of Fifty4 Hagley Road.

The Five Ways underpass has been closed to all traffic since 2019, and they have to go on a diversion around Five Ways Island.

Beyond the end of the line, it was proposed that Sprint would continue down Hagley Road, but not sure what has happened to that. It would take a very long time to extend the line even further (as far as Bearwood and Quinton), but that seems unlikely for now.

1st October 2017.

The view from the wide pavement outside of Tricorn House. I thought they could built the line here (at the time). View towards Morrisons and Fifty4 Hagley Road, near where the line would eventually be built in 2020.

But they would eventually build the extension outside of Morrisons towards Starbucks Coffee.

You can see how wide the pavement was at the time at this side of Hagley Road back in 2017. The bus stops, lampposts, etc would all have to go.

A view towards the offices at Fifty4 Hagley Road. Just some barriers on the pavement. Trees and grass that would have to go.

15th February 2018.

A bus ride from the top deck of the X10 NXWM Platinum bus, as it passed Morrisons and the Marriott Hotel (on the right).

Cones in the middle of the road. Opposite was also a Pizza Hut Delivery place for take away.

The bus leaves Hagley Road, heading down the Five Ways Underpass towards Broad Street.

There was a digital billboard that you can see as you head under Five Ways Island.

View from the bus in the Five Ways Underpass. A view runners of the Great Birmingham Run used to have until a few years ago. Broad Street is at the end of the white light!

29th June 2019.

The view from the top of Hagley Road. The Five Ways Underpass to the left. It would be hard to get views of the Metro extension around the tunnel if you were on the pavement, especially with traffic going past.

21st December 2019.

One way to see a view of the tram tracks being laid was from the top deck of a bus going around Five Ways Island. This view towards Hagley Road past The Lansdowne, early track laying progress. This was taken from the top deck of the no 24 NXWM Platinum bus. By now going on a diversion to the City Centre.

23rd December 2019.

Saw these pink Midland Metro Alliance barriers just beyond Morrisons on the Hagley Road.

There was also some pink Midland Metro Alliance barriers in front of Fifty4 Hagley Road. All of that grass and young trees have been removed for the extension in the year since.

4th January 2020.

A view of the Five Ways Underpass with the tracks that had been laid. This was the view zoomed in from the window at Morrisons Cafe. This was my last photo of the extension on Hagley Road before the pandemic was declared, and we had those lockdowns and restrictions.

31st July 2020.

With restrictions eased by the summer, I was back to work in the middle of July. On a day off I headed towards the Hagley Road on a warm day to see The Two Towers again. Was lots of cones and barriers on the right.

There was also a lot of traffic trying to get past Fifty4 Hagley Road. As only one lane was open.

25th October 2020.

I heard that the crossing on the Hagley Road near Starbucks was closed, so that day I went to have a drink and toastie inside of Starbucks. Then got these photos of the tracks that had been laid. A bit awkward with the fences in the way.

Completed tracks emerging from the Five Ways underpass onto the Hagley Road, in from of Tricorn House and Cobalt Square.

There was a bus stop in use on the left, but all other traffic had to go to the right.

24th December 2020.

Christmas Eve, and I got off the no 1 bus on Highfield Road, and walked to Hagley Road to see the latest progress of the extension.  Starting from Fifty4 Hagley Road. This was near the old Birmingham 1 mile sign.

Bit of a mess outside of Fifty4 Hagley Road, but there is tracks laid just up ahead.

The tracks that have been installed in front of Barclays, towards Morrisons.

Cross over tracks just beyond Starbucks. Bright sunshine.

A path has been built towards Starbucks Coffee, with bricks in the middle. I'm not sure if they were open for takeaway or not.

Tracks in the direction of Fifty4 Hagley Road, past Barclays. You can see the cross over tracks. A lot of litter needs to be picked up when they resume in January 2021.

The tracks towards Morrisons. This was the wide pavement. Trees on the right survive next to the dry cleaning place.

Last photo, of water logged tracks that come out of the Five Ways underpass. With traffic waiting on the Hagley Road, having just come on from Five Ways Island.

27th December 2020.

The day after Boxing Day, I got the bus to Harborne, then caught a no 24 NXWM Platinum bus from Harborne Road, Edgbaston. Got the updated view of the tram tracks going in and out of the Five Ways underpass from Five Ways Island.

The bus stopped at traffic lights, so was able to get a second view. The tracks heading towards Morrisons and Fifty4 Hagley Road. Seems to be concrete barriers in the middle for some reason.

See also my Broad Street post.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

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110 passion points
Construction & regeneration
23 Dec 2020 - Daniel Sturley
Gallery

The Construction of 103 Colmore Row - December 2020

The finished 103 Colmore Row looks oustanding and almost surreal, as if computer generated!

A fantastic gallery of December photos in this update from Elliott and Daniel.

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The Construction of 103 Colmore Row - December 2020





The finished 103 Colmore Row looks oustanding and almost surreal, as if computer generated!

A fantastic gallery of December photos in this update from Elliott and Daniel.


23rd November 2020

Photo by Daniel Sturley

4th December 2020

Photos by Elliott Brown

Photo by Daniel Sturley

5th December 2020

Photos by Daniel Sturley

6th December 2020

7th December 2020

11th December 2020

Photos by Elliott Brown

12th December 2020

14th December 2020

Photos by Daniel Sturley

19th December 2020

Photos by Elliott Brown

Photos by Daniel Sturley

21st December 2020

Photo by Elliott Brown

22nd December 2020

Photo by Elliott Brown

There are now over 1300 photos of the construction of this building and can be seen in reverse date order in the full gallery here: 103 Colmore Row Full Construction Gallery

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80 passion points
Construction & regeneration
22 Dec 2020 - Daniel Sturley
Gallery

The Construction of The Mercian - December Photo Update

The concrete core of The Mercian is now complete and the main structure is fast catching up, top out at floor 42 soon! Photos in this update start on 7th November and cover up to the 19th December (above from Highgate).

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The Construction of The Mercian - December Photo Update





The concrete core of The Mercian is now complete and the main structure is fast catching up, top out at floor 42 soon! Photos in this update start on 7th November and cover up to the 19th December (above from Highgate).


7th November 2020

13th November 2020

15th November 2020

18th November 2020

19th November 2020

20th November 2020

23rd November 2020

26th November 2020

1st December 2020

Photos by Daniel Sturley

4th December 2020

Photo by Elliott Brown.

10th December 2020

10th December 2020

14th December 2020

17th December 2020

19th December 2020

Photos by Daniel Sturley

There are now nearly 1000 photos of the construction of this building and can be seen in reverse date order in the full gallery here: The Mercian Full Construction Gallery.

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80 passion points
Classic Architecture
11 Dec 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Old Joe at the University of Birmingham from 2018 to 2020

While during the lockdown / pandemic you are not allowed to go onto the University of Birmingham campus in Edgbaston you can see Old Joe for miles around the campus. Views here taken between 2018 and 2020. Up until early March 2020 I could still go onto the campus (now it's not possible without an ID). Named after Joseph Chamberlain who was the First Chancellor of the University.

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Old Joe at the University of Birmingham from 2018 to 2020





While during the lockdown / pandemic you are not allowed to go onto the University of Birmingham campus in Edgbaston you can see Old Joe for miles around the campus. Views here taken between 2018 and 2020. Up until early March 2020 I could still go onto the campus (now it's not possible without an ID). Named after Joseph Chamberlain who was the First Chancellor of the University.


OLD JOE:

JOSEPH CHAMBERLAIN MEMORIAL CLOCK TOWER

 

Find my old post comparing the Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower here to the Torre del Mangia in Siena, Italy.

Old Joe on Twitter.

Some history about the Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower aka Old Joe. Built from 1900 until 1908, it was the tallest building in Birmingham until 1965, when the BT Tower opened. Designed by Aston Webb and Ingress Bell who were responsible for the initial phase of building the University in the Edwardian period. The tower was based on the Torre del Mangia in Siena, Italy (see the link above to my old comparison post).

The tower commemorated Joseph Chamberlain who was the First Chancellor of the University of Birmingham. It is the tallest free standing clock tower in the world. It is over 100 metres tall (possibly as high as 110 metres). The tower is Grade II listed and it can be seen for miles around the campus. As far away as the Lickey Hills and Waseley Hills (for instance). Even from nearby parks and suburbs. It is thought that Old Joe was the inspiration for the Eye of Sauron in J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.

2018

January 2018 from Beacon Hill at the Lickey Hills Country Park. Old Joe on the City Skyline

March 2018: From Vincent Drive overlooking the Cross City Line. The new University of Birmingham Library with Old Joe.

May 2018: Seen from the Bristol Road in Edgbaston, when they got the clock working again!

June 2018: View from Winnie Road in Selly Oak around the time that Old Joe won the World Cup of Birmingham's Best Buildings! on Twitter (held by I Choose Birmingham).

July 2018: Visible from the Bourn Brook Way not far from Harborne Lane in Selly Oak.

November 2018: A close up view from the Chancellors Court at the University of Birmingham.

2019

January 2019: From the Green Heart at the University of Birmingham (before it was completed later that year).

February 2019: In this view from the Bristol Road, Selly Oak, before the Selly Oak Railway Bridge of 1931.

April 2019: Heading down Cartland Road in Stirchley, could see Old Joe between the roofs of houses.

August 2019: Not far from the Bramall Music Building. The clock was once again stuck at 12 on all sides.

October 2019: The view from Bournbrook Road in Selly Park, heading towards Selly Oak.

December 2019: Old Joe was visible on the skyline from Sir Herbert Austin Way in Northfield.

2020

January 2020: Heading towards the Poynting Building from the Guild of Students over a footbridge with this view.

March 2020: One of my last shots of Old Joe before the lockdown began earlier in the month. Clocks stuck at 12 again.

May 2020: The first time I'd seen Old Joe in two months due to the lockdown. This view from Cannon Hill Park.

May 2020: Also saw Old Joe from Highbury Park, not far from Joseph Chamberlain's former home Highbury Hall.

May 2020: Walking back from Weoley Castle past Selly Oak Park down Gibbins Road saw this view of Old Joe.

June 2020: Saw this view of Old Joe from the Waseley Hills Country Park, before I zoomed in on the skyline.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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90 passion points
Green open spaces
10 Dec 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Selly Oak Park: the gem of a park off the Selly Oak Bypass

Selly Oak Park is located on Harborne Lane in Selly Oak. Sections of the Lapal Canal goes through the north east corner of the park (still to be fully restored). The Selly Oak Bypass (Aston Webb Boulevard) opened in 2011 and the Selly Oak Shopping Park in 2018. They are now building a new section of the bypass near the former Sainsbury's site at Selly Oak Triangle. Also on Gibbins Rd.

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Selly Oak Park: the gem of a park off the Selly Oak Bypass





Selly Oak Park is located on Harborne Lane in Selly Oak. Sections of the Lapal Canal goes through the north east corner of the park (still to be fully restored). The Selly Oak Bypass (Aston Webb Boulevard) opened in 2011 and the Selly Oak Shopping Park in 2018. They are now building a new section of the bypass near the former Sainsbury's site at Selly Oak Triangle. Also on Gibbins Rd.


Selly Oak Park

This park is located on Harborne Lane and Gibbins Road in Selly Oak. It was developed under the Kings Norton and Northfield Urban District Council. Land was donated in February 1899 by members of the Gibbins family. The park was opened in April 1899 on Easter Monday. In 1911 the park was taken over by Birmingham City Council when Selly Oak became part of the city. More land was donated over the years. In 1913 and 1919 by the owners of the Birmingham Battery and Metal Company (also Gibbins family members), in 1935 to give access to the Weoley Park Farm Estate. More land in 1950 by the Birmingham Battery & Metal Company (again). In 1958 some land was transferred to the City’s Public Works Committee. More recent land donations in 1980 and 1982.

The shelter built in 1899, the bandstand built in 1908 and the Daughters of Rest Pavilion built in 1953 have all since been demolished.

The park is now maintained by The Friends of Selly Oak Park. That includes all the wooden sculptures found around the park.

2012

My first walk around Selly Oak Park was during June 2012, testing out my then new camera (which I had until about December 2015). I probably entered from Harborne Lane and headed up the main path.

One of the main squirrels in the park, with a nut.

Saw this red wind funnel thing. There is similar funnels in other nearby parks.

A council lawnmower going around the park cutting the grass.

The trees were so lush and green in the summer, the path curving round to the right.

Another squirrel behind a tree.

Two paths amongst the trees.

Distant view of the red funnel.

2017

The next visit to Selly Oak Park was during January 2017. The Friends of Selly Oak Park had commissioned all of these new wooden sculptures which were worth checking out. On this side it says Lapal.

To the side Welcome. So probably "Welcome to Selly Oak Park". This is near Gibbins Road.

A carved wooden bench. In memory of Geoff Bartlett, Founder of Friends of Selly Oak Park.

Part of the playground. A climbing frame, and a ride along a rope with a tyre (I think).

Another wooden sculpture. Of deer or a kangeroo (probably a deer and it's cub).

A new Welcome to Selly Oak Park sign. It's near the car park off Harborne Lane and close to the corner with Gibbins Road.

2018

This visit during March 2018. View of the new outdoor gym.

Daffodils alongside a path.

Selly Oak Park Play Area. One of the many Birmingham City Council elephant signs that you would find in this and other City parks. Behind was a slide.

Daffodils around a tree.

Daffodils and crocuses. From here I headed up Gibbins Road towards Lodge Hill Cemetery. Weoley Castle is also nearby.

Happy New Year 2020. More park posts to come during 2020.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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