Cortland Broad Street (The Square) Birmingham, UK


2020 Living






City Living

The Square is a brand new 35 storey development at the north end of Birmingham’s Broad Street, a mile long street with a number of large, ambitious developments coming forwards.

From the outset the client was focused on delivering a unique BTR residential neighbourhood with physical and mental well-being at the centre of residents’ lives. The brief required delivering an extraordinary amount of shared internal and external amenity spaces to provide a range of social, work and leisure areas within a safe community environment.


It includes 2 residential buildings and a hotel arranged around a central courtyard space. The design introduces a lifestyle concept which is enhanced by this unique opportunity to incorporate such a large south facing courtyard.

A particular challenge for this project was that the design development was fully undertaken during the lockdown period, such that no face to face meetings were possible between the design team and the planning authority. Frequent video conferences replaced normal design and planning meetings, and it’s been an amazing team effort to pull together a fully coordinated planning application through unfamiliar times. Planning permission was granted in October 2020.


The Square consists of 2 residential buildings; a tall 35 storey residential building fronting Broad Street, a 6-storey building on Ryland Street, and an 8 storey 229 bed hotel, all arranged around a central courtyard space.

At the heart of the design of The Square was the desire to reinforce the simple geometry of a 3m x 3m square grid throughout all the three-dimensional modelling of the buildings, and it is this simple logic that defines the elevations and planning of all three blocks.


Subtle variations in order and textures provide contrast and scale as the development rotates round from Broad Street through to Grosvenor Street West, with the continuity of the geometry providing a constant across the site and unifying the separate buildings. This form also allows 36% of the 440 new homes to be dual aspect, maximising natural daylight and views of the city.

The scheme delivers 440 new homes in an almost even 50/50 split of 1 and 2 bedroom apartments.

Electric vehicle parking bays will be designated for residents along with extensive secure cycling parking.

Residents can utilise the gym with latest smart technology equipment, break out onto the exercise terraces, enjoy a match on the multi activity pitch or take the challenge of 5to1k on the 200m running track.


Relax with mindfulness classes or yoga in dedicated studios, utilise the creche whilst using any of the four resident’s lounges, catch up with work in the business lounge and hot desk area, or meet friends in the licensed party room or private dining room. Chill out in the garden lounge and south facing terrace and complete the evening on the roof top terrace with views back towards the city centre. The opportunities to live, work and socialise within the community are endless.


The Square will set a new landmark for a purpose-built residential community, providing unrivalled levels of communal spaces to support residents’ lifestyles.


Our team feels strongly that they have  developed something unique with this scheme, and a design that will provide a fantastic place to live, work and play in the city centre.

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