Returning to the Big City Plan

A City Centre for the Future


John Newson’s analysis of the Big City Plan can be read in full on the website of Birmingham Friends of the Earth [BFOE].    

He opens by asking: “How can the city centre become a busy, but sustainable, heart of Birmingham: somewhere where people want to live, work and visit, and not just drive across?” 

As the new Big City Plan from the City Council looks like the right vision for the future, Friends of the Earth has welcomed it. 

After urging the planners to go further, John notes that the latest version includes more environmental measures than the draft plan: better walking routes and bicycle hire points, more public green spaces and some emphasis on energy efficiency of buildings. 

BFOE rightly presses for implementation of these measures and states that the approach should become mandatory. 

This interesting and valuable report is informed by the author’s visits to continental cities and his interest in transport systems. As it is detailed and substantial, any attempt to summarise it would fail to do it justice, so do follow the link in the first sentence and read on. 

A copy of The Birmingham Big City Plan can be studied here:


Some time ago, an unofficialplain Englishversion of the Big City Plan ‘Work in Progress’ document was made by a group of volunteers from the Birmingham Bloggers’ Group who wanted a place to discuss the issues and options and help each other (and everyone) understand the Big City Plan.


One response to “Returning to the Big City Plan

  1. The efforts of Birmingham FOE are to be commended as they take an ’emperor has no clothes aproach’. It is not only in the Big City Plan that these volunteers have found good stuff – they had a go at asking for commitment to measures to grow the local railways. Their website is at

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