Birmingham has a plan, and they are not afraid of letting everyone know about it. The 2022 Commonwealth Games have come and gone with the worldwide acclaim still fresh in the mind of everyone who had the pleasure of attending and watching. However, the games were just a small cog within an enormous wheel of planning and regeneration that is planned over the next two decades.
At the heart of the city and the future plans lies Digbeth, home of the entrepreneur, home to throwback industrial architecture and home to a plethora of funky bars, eateries, markets and much more. Think Soho in New York or Shoreditch in London and you are halfway on your way what to expect in Digbeth.
If you are working in the city, this is the place to live and also the place to let your hair down and party. Digbeth is the home to the young professional demographic that are changing the aesthetic of the city and in turn, driving huge investment from across the globe.
So why are people moving to live in Digbeth? What is driving this huge investment from Chinese and Middle Eastern powerhouse investment magnates? The figures do not lie, and the future remains incredibly bright but let's have a look in a little more detail about what goes on in Digbeth, once the best kept secret in Birmingham but clearly no longer.
1. The Custard Factory
A hub of independent shops, event venues, and creative businesses all based on the site of the original Birds Custard factory. You will also find music studios, trendy bars, shops and much more. Whatever your interests; they can be found here, jazz to punk, craft beer to wineries, fine art to film, all is catered for. The cool place to hang out and be seen.
2. Soak in the colour
Digbeth is an Instagram dream with colourful street art a regular eyecatcher. Exhibitions also take place regularly at Centrala space which focuses on Central and Eastern European exhibits. You cannot fail to be captivated by the visuals that surround you across the streets, the bars, the eateries and the galleries. Soak up the colour and immerse yourself in the culture.
3. Sample the amazing street food
The whole area is awash with bars, restaurants and eateries providing opportunities to sample food cultures from across the world.
Digbeth Dining Club has harnessed a huge following with the street food on offer servicing and always vibrant crowd. Alternatively, visit the Zumhof foodmarket and choose from Mexican street vendors, OSO Streetfood and for burger lovers, Velveteen is on hand to provide mouth watering options.
Whether you are an advocate or a critic, the fact remains that HS2 will be a gamechanger for Birmingham as a city. With Digbeth located adjacent to the forthcoming hub, investors have latched onto the area, pumping huge amounts of funds into commercial and residential projects. Fast forward ten years and Digbeth will be the centre of productivity and home to the professionals driving it. Whether you work in Birmingham or London, Digbeth could be your home.
5. Smithfield regeneration
Formerly, the site of Birmingham's Wholsesale Markets, 14 hectares of land will be regenerated to provide the location for a once in a generation opportunity to create a new commercial hub, providing over 3000 new homes and over 8000 new jobs. Digbeth, located in the middle between this £1.9 billion project and HS2 will be the major commercial beneficiary. All part of the city's BIG CITY PLAN and one of the most important factors behind overseas investment within the city.
6. Independent markets
Who doesn’t love a good market? Digbeth has a hidden gem, tucked away on Floodgate Street which offers a unique shopping experience. Red Brick Market acts as a department store alternative retail site where stallholders needn’t have to be present at their stall. Plus, small business owners are able to put their own stamp on their stall by decorating them however they see fit and giving them the edge in contrast to regular, council-led markets. The independent indoor market is seeing more and more small businesses taking residence at the site so there is plenty to discover.