Updated designs have been released for the new Aston Church Road Overbridge that will span the high-speed rail line connecting Saltley, Washwood Heath and Nechells in Birmingham.
After initial designs were shared with the public in 2021, local feedback has inspired changes that will provide a wider walkway, creating enough space for cyclists, and an improved lighting strategy, making it safer and more environmentally friendly.
The updated designs provide increased lighting levels for pedestrians and cyclists, responding to feedback on user experience and levels of safety whist reducing light spill to trains below. This lighting design will also protect wildlife, particularly bats that may forage underneath the bridge, by decreasing overall light pollution.
Public feedback has also resulted in the stainless steel finish being replaced with weathered steel panels incorporating a perforated pattern to maximise light and views, making the bridge feel warmer and improving the pedestrian experience. The side of the bridge has also been lowered in sections to improve views.
People were also keen to see green spaces, so this has also been addressed by creating new woodland planting in the area around the bridge, including native trees, shrubs and species-rich grassland.
Nick McGough, Lead Architect for the BBV Design Joint Venture said:
“Community feedback has been essential in developing our design for the Aston Church Road Overbridge. We have balanced challenging technical constraints in developing a robust but elegant bridge whilst seeking every opportunity to both enhance the user experience and increase biodiversity through our adjoining landscape proposals.
“Importantly, this bridge is a key element of wider enhancements which HS2 will provide in the locality, providing better pedestrian and cycle connectivity for the local community which will help support longer-term sustainable economic growth for the area.”