Pebble Mill, Birmingham

Pebble Mill, Birmingham



Calthorpe Estates


11 HA


New Build


Civil Engineering
Flood Risk
Hydraulic Modelling and Breach Analysis
Drainage Strategies


The 11 hectare (27-acre) historic Pebble Mill site, part of the Calthorpe Estate in Edgbaston, was the BBC's Birmingham home for over 40 years until the doors were finally closed in 2004, when the corporation moved to the Mailbox in the city centre. Pebble Mill was earmarked for redevelopment by Calthorpe Estates for a vision to transform the site into a world class destination for healthcare and Life Sciences.

BWB was appointed in 2009 to provide all aspects of engineering input to the delivery of the masterplan, working closely with the wider Calthorpe consultancy team to evolve sensitive designs for the infrastructure serving the site. This includes a new spine road through the site with complimentary highway works at either end.

The planning process for the various development components at the site has been challenging. A number of major occupiers have been secured with permissions presenting a changing masterplan and BWB has provided on-going support throughout via transport assessments, travel plans, road safety audits, ground investigation, flood risk assessment, S278 works design and civil and structural engineering design and constraints assessment generally.

Key Challenges

Flood risk to the site is a significant issue and we continue to work with Calthorpe Estates and a wide collective of stakeholders including the Environment Agency. The aim is to provide betterment that will reduce flood risk, not just at the site but in the wider catchment of the Chad and Bourn Brooks plus the River Rea downstream.

Surface water drainage solutions, which add amenity value to the landscaping and include a raised riverside boardwalk, enhance the functional requirements of the infrastructure. High quality finishes are used throughout the public realm to enhance both the visitor and occupier experience.