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Birmingham Skyscraper To Break Octagonal Record

Plenty of construction firms have been busy using lifting slings to hoist materials by crane to great heights above English cities in recent years, but the shape of the latest development to receive planning permission will break new ground.

Birmingham’s next skyscraper will set a record as the tallest octagonal-shaped residential tower in the world, providing new construction and challenges, but also a distinct visual effect when it is completed.

The Octagon Tower, which has been designed by local firm Glenn Howells Architects, is the latest development in the Paradise scheme, which is radically redeveloping part of the city centre. It will be 155 metres (508 ft) high and contain 346 build-to-rent homes.

Partner at Glenn Howells Dav Bansal said: “With its instantly recognisable and slender design, it also offers homes of unparalleled individuality with the apartments enjoying a generous 12 m facet of the Octagon.”

Regional director with Paradise Development Manager Argent Rob Groves said the decision by the city council to grant planning permission is “a massive vote of confidence in Birmingham and the regional economy’s recovery from the Covid pandemic”.

The location of the tower at the northern end of the Paradise site will place it at the top of the ridge that runs across the centre of Birmingham, meaning that the impact of its height will be even greater in providing panoramic views across the city from the tower and ensuring it can be seen for many miles.

Conceived with a vision to combine work, leisure and living in the heart of the city, the Paradise development also links Centenary Square, Chamberlain Square and Victoria Square.

The former now contains the new Library of Birmingham, after its 1970s predecessor, which occupied part of the Paradise Circus site, was demolished. The new developments are designed to open up the area more for pedestrians, while the three squares also lie close to the western extension of the Midlands Metro light rail service. 

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