Southside BID seeks Council backing

By on 19/07/2010 in News

Plans to establish a new Business Improvement District (BID) in the Southside area of Birmingham are set to move a step closer next week, when Birmingham City Council's Cabinet is asked to officially back the proposals (26th July 2010). 

Agreement by the Cabinet will mean the Council delivering a block 'yes' vote, to the BID being set up, on behalf of all nine businesses it owns in the proposed area.

The BID arrangements require a ballot of eligible non-domestic ratepayers in the proposed BID area who are to be liable for the proposed BID levy.  Approval requires a majority “yes” vote in both the number of votes cast and rateable value of the votes cast.  The Ballot will be held in the Autumn.

Councilor Timothy Huxtable, Cabinet Member for Transportation and Regeneration said;

“If successful the Southside ballot would bring a sixth BID for Birmingham a step closer. I am optimistic that all local businesses will recognise the positive differences and additional improvements a BID will bring to the Southside area.

“BIDs represent a very significant advance in the management of a city centre and help to develop partnerships between business ratepayers and the City Council, enabling businesses to play a more central role in managing and maintaining their local environment.”

Birmingham played a leading role in the National BIDs pilot and helped to secure one of the UK's first BIDs in the Broad Street area in 2005 and this BID has just been renewed for a further five years, following a successful Renewal Ballot.
Out of the 112 BIDs currently operating in the UK, five of them  are in Birmingham (Broad Street, Retail Birmingham, Colmore Business District, Erdington and Kings Heath).

The Southside district is situated close to both New Street Station and Bullring and is made up of over 300 eligible businesses including hotels, theatres, bars, clubs, independent retailers, car parks, restaurants, offices and commercial.

The area takes in key national and internationally known brands including the Birmingham Hippodrome, Radisson Blu and Holiday Inn Hotels, The Arcadian, Electric Cinema, Old Rep Theatre, O2 Academy and the Chinese Quarter and Gay Village, together with an array of retail businesses and major office occupiers.

Business representatives in the area are now developing a detailed BID Proposal, including the objectives and targets for the BID, the finance to be raised and the priorities for investment.  The intention is that businesses will have a greater input into improvements where they are prepared to pay for them.

Chair of the Southside BID Steering Group and Chief Executive of Birmingham Hippodrome, Stuart Griffiths commented;

“Southside is a vibrant area of the city with a bustling entertainment and hospitality sector and lots of opportunities.  Over the past two years, the representative Southside Steering Group, supported by the Birmingham City Centre Partnership has worked hard on the development of a BID and a successful Ballot will secure extra investment of £1.75 million over five years to fund additional improvements and services to really put Southside on the international map.  Without the BID there is a real danger that the area will be left behind.

“The support of Birmingham City Council is absolutely crucial to making the BID happen.  It will demonstrate to businesses the many advantages that can be brought about through working in partnership.”

ENDS

For more information contact Simon Houltby 0121 303 3503

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