The Construction work on the first phase of the new creative innovation centre at Birmingham City University started work this week. The construction work began on Monday, the 30th October and will lead to the creation of STEAMhouse. This project will also include the refurbishment of a former car dealership in Birmingham’s Digbeth area in order to house a new centre and marker space. The intention behind this development is to connect STEM subject areas, Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths to the Arts. It is thought that STEAMhouse will be able to offer support to 200 sole traders as well as start-ups and local businesses and deliver access to expertise and finance for growth.

The refurbishment at the Birmingham site is being carried out by Paragon Interiors Group. The contractors will open a test-bed that will be used for the submitting of ideas for next year. This test-bed will run up to September 2019. The multi-million-pound partnership arrangement has been created with Birmingham arts organisation, Eastside Projects. The organisation works to support and encourage the promotion of the Arts in line with STEM subjects. The new development is encouraging a closer working relationship across the different disciplines and industry sectors.

This initiative will inform a later second phase of the STEAMhouse project. This second phase, currently in the pipeline has already received £14 million from the Government that was allocated in the 2016 Budget. This phase of the project will seek the creation of incubation and office spaces with teaching facilities, co-working and marker spaces and artists’ studios on the new site, when construction work is completed.

The new STEAMhouse pilot phase will combine academics, entrepreneurs, designers, makers, future talent and organisations to foster a greater innovation, develop a range of new products, and support economic growth with a programme of business support.