Rotunda

pictures, photos, facts and information on Rotunda (Birmingham)


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The Rotunda is one of the highrise building in Birmingham. It was used as a commercial building, however, it was partially turned into a residential in recent refurbishment. It is Grade II listed building.

In the James A. Roberts design of a Bullring shopping centre there was a 12 storey circular building included. However, the new, changed design was approved. The construction of the building started in 1961 and it was finished four years later, in 1965. Rotunda in 81 metres tall and it has 25 floors that are supported by the reinforced concrete central core and perimeter columns. In 1974, a pub on the ground floor of the building was the site of one of the Birmingham pub bombings.

At first it was derided and considered a “dead building”. Nevertheless people did not agree with its demolition during the reconstruction of the Bullring centre. On the top of the building there used to be advertisement displayed.

The refurbishment was done from 2004 to and it was finished on May 13, 2008. It was provided by Urban Splash with Glenn Howells. In May 2004, its original architect Jim Roberts said that the building had originally been intended to look like a candle, with a flame-like weather beacon on top, changing colour to reflect the weather. However, the lack of finances stopped this design. Finally, there were 232 luxury apartments, including six penthouse suites on the 20th floor created. One of the penthouses on the 20th and all the 19th floor apartments are run as serviced apartments by the Manchester-based operator, Staying Cool. The façade consists of 72 floor-to-ceiling height glass panes, each placed at 5° to the neighbouring window.
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