Have you noticed this tree outside the burnt-out Kingsway Cinema before? It looks out on to a car park on one side, and Kings Heath High Street on the other. But if it peers hard with its topmost branches, it can see Kings Heath Village Square at the top of the High Street, and all the markets, events and everyday socialising that go on there. This tree looks at its own tarmac square of abandoned vehicles, and dearly wishes that it could be transformed into a beautiful, open space where people can gather, meet, talk and rest. And I think that many of the people using the High Street would agree, certainly those waiting at the bus stop would appreciate some relaxed seating off the pavement. And those with picnic lunches, or food from the many take-away shops around this area would be glad of a place to eat.
Fortunately, there is now the chance that this could happen. Birmingham City Council are currently considering a planning application to convert the Kingsway Cinema into a shop and flats, retaining the cinema façade. The planners could insist that the developers replace the car park with this kind of public space, but they are only likely to do this if they can see that there is public support for the idea.
So if you, like this Kings Heath tree would like to see a more welcoming space under the ‘Welcome to Kings Heath’ mural, please add your comments to the planning application using the link below, and tell the planners that you’d like to see the car park area converted into a public, pedestrian space as part of this development.
(This post has been recovered from web archive and has therefore lost its comments. They are included here in the post)