Jenny Barlow, Sustrans Project Co-ordinator, West MidlandsHi, I’m Jenny Barlow, Project Coordinator for DIY Streets Kings Heath.

Sustrans is a sustainable transport charity which has, for the last decade, had a national community street design team of which DIY Streets Kings Heath is part. The Kings Heath project is the first of its kind in Birmingham.

The DIY Streets Kings Heath design project follows a community-led approach and bringing local people together to make decisions about the environment in which they live, work and go to school. The Kings Heath project focuses on the High Street and on engaging all stakeholders in the area to create a final scheme which will satisfy a wide range of needs. This will then be presented to the Council.

DIY Streets has built on work already undertaken by the active local community in Kings Heath. The project has delivered a range of engagement activities with local schools and the wider community focusing on the development of design solutions to enhance Kings Heath High Street as a safe attractive place to live, visit, work and go to school.

How did this come about?

This project came about as a result of the local community identifying the need for a safer, healthier and more attractive Kings Heath. The Sustrans DIY Streets project acted as a way to build upon the local initiatives and take forward the aspirations of the people that live, work and go to school in Kings Heath to help formulate a long term vision to improve the High Street.

What are we trying to do?

The main aims of the project are:

  • To improve Kings Heath High Street as a place where people want to spend time.
  • To create a safer and more attractive environment for everyone.
  • To encourage more ‘green travel’ on local journeys to and from the High Street. 

DIY Streets Kings Heath is funded by the Big Lottery  from October 2013 until May 2015 to work with the Kings Heath community to collate ideas and develop design proposals.

These design recommendations for the High Street will be passed to Birmingham City Council, who are a key project partner, to go through the approvals process. The proposals will then be subject to the Council formal consultation process before work begins to happen in the next financial year 2015-16.


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