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New home announced for Birmingham Conservatoire

UNIVERSITY NEWS LAST UPDATED : 25 MARCH 2014

Birmingham City University has today (March 25th) announced a new £40 million home for Birmingham Conservatoire.

The new purpose-built Conservatoire will be built alongside Millennium Point, adjacent to Jennens Road in Eastside. The development is being taken forward in partnership with Millennium Point and Birmingham City Council.

The new Conservatoire will be just a short distance from New Street and Moor Street train stations, in the heart of the City’s learning quarter, which is already home to Birmingham City University’s City Centre Campus, the ThinkTank Museum, and the Birmingham Ormiston Academy.  The new facility is due to open by summer 2017,  and will continue to provide world-class music education facilities for current and future students.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Cliff Allan said: “Birmingham City Council’s redevelopment of Paradise Circus meant that a new home was needed for our world-famous Birmingham Conservatoire.  Over the past few months the University has been in close negotiation with Birmingham City Council to reach an appropriate agreement.  Subject to confirmation of the Compulsory Purchase Order of Paradise Circus by the Secretary of State, construction is expected to commence in summer 2015. I am delighted that an agreement has been reached which will enable Birmingham Conservatoire to relocate to this new, state-of-the-art building by summer 2017.”

Birmingham City Council is fully supporting the proposals as part of Eastside’s expansion as a hub for education and creative development. As Councillor Sir Albert Bore explained: “Birmingham is known worldwide for its music talent and Birmingham Conservatoire is part of our heritage and critical to our future. The redevelopment of Paradise Circus has provided an opportunity to deliver a new venue that will take forward the brilliant talent we have here and be a landmark for music excellence, creating a further high quality aspect to the educational presence at Eastside.”      

The new Conservatoire will be a unique contemporary building providing state of the art facilities for students. It will incorporate two major performance spaces including a fine new concert hall for orchestral training and public performance, private rehearsal and practice rooms, recording and technology in addition to providing teaching spaces for musicians from a variety of disciplines.

The University has now initiated the process of designing new concert, practice, teaching and study facilities which will be the envy of conservatoires across Europe. Working closely with Millennium Point on the design and construction, to ensure that a facility is delivered which complements the existing offer, in both architecture and service.  

An announcement on the choice of architect and support design team will shortly be made with construction work planned to start next year and opening in 2017.

Simon Topman, Chair of Millennium Point Trust, said: “We are delighted that the Conservatoire selected Millennium Point for its future base. The building complements our wider vision for the site. The Conservatoire will be ideally positioned as part of our strategy to really improve the vista of Jennens Road at the heart of Eastside.”

Professor Allan added: “During its long history Birmingham Conservatoire has earned an international reputation for the excellence of its music teaching, research and performances. We will continue to provide the finest music education in our present building until the new location is built. We are confident that the future changes will provide us with a glorious opportunity to build on our proud history and develop world-class facilities for future generations.”

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