Through a range of projects and activities and with support from West Midlands Railway, the group has set out to improve the attractiveness of the station, making it a more welcoming and friendly place for visitors, residents and workers.
The JQBID becomes the first Business Improvement District in the UK to formally adopt a station and is currently on the lookout for volunteers and sponsors to join in with their plans. Projects can include art installations and exhibitions, community events, and planting.
Gaynor Steele, a local Garden Designer who recently moved her design studio premises to the Jewellery Quarter, is the inspiration for the JQBID led group. Gaynor is an award-winning garden designer who has successfully transformed other urban sites and hopes to bring greenery and even wild flowers into the city centre.
“My vision is to introduce trees, flowers and edibles such as vegetables to urban environments. The aim is to introduce a selection of planters onto the platforms which, in time will grow into edibles for people to pick and taste if they wish. In time we hope that the station will grow into a community hub for information, art displays and community links”.
West Midlands Railway supports station adoption groups across the rail network and is aiming to host community engagement activities at every one of its 114 stations across the region.
Fay Easton, head of stakeholder and community for West Midlands Railway said:
“Station adoption makes a real difference to rail users and provides a valuable sense of community for the volunteers who get involved. The plans for Jewellery Quarter station are exciting and innovative. It will be fantastic to have a range of edible planters for our passengers to enjoy and the input from JQBID will be a real asset to the station.”
The Jewellery Quarter is home to a diverse community of jewellers, makers and independent businesses, a growing independent food and drink scene as well as an increasing population of residents.
Luke Crane, Executive Director of the JQBID believes it’s important for the community to have a station that they can be proud of. Luke comments:
“The station should be the beating heart of the community and is often the first impression that visitors have of the Quarter. As a Business Improvement District, we are always striving to make the Quarter as attractive, clean and vibrant as possible, which is why we are so excited to be a part of this project”.
The JQBID are on a mission to enhance the look and feel of the station but need support from local volunteers and sponsors to make their vision a reality. If you would like to get involved in the project or have any ideas that could help support its improvements, please email today.