A consultant’s report into the £1bn redevelopment of Paradise Circus and the Central Library site in Birmingham has cast doubts over the feasibility of the project.
The 32-page report, obtained by Building under the Freedom of Information Act, stated: “We have significant doubts as to whether it will be possible to obtain private sector finance for the project and transfer risk relating to upfront expenditure and ongoing development to the private sector.”
The consultants added that the scheme would be in deficit if the initial expenditure were to rise 10% or projected land receipts fall 10%. The report said: “Given the nature of the project, there would be a large reliance on developer equity to fund upfront costs rather than debt finance. These upfront costs are very substantial due to the specific technical constraints – for instance building over the Queensway Tunnel – and the need for extensive demolitions and third party land acquisitions.”
Ken Hardeman, Tory party spokesperson on regeneration for Brimingham council, said that he was unaware of the existence of the document and dismissed its findings.
The council is working with development partner Argent on proposals for Paradise Circus and the library site, which should be made public soon.