Curtains close on Two Snowhill performance

ricefinalMore than 2,900 members of the public visited Two Snowhill following the launch of the Birmingham city centre office development this month (April).

Developers Hines and Ballymore took the unprecedented step of opening the revolving doors of the 310,000 sq ft building to the public for ten days, laying on a performance installation by Birmingham-based theatre company Stan’s Cafe.

As well as seeing the free show, visitors could take in Two Snowhill’s 14-storey height atrium, ride in its scenic glazed lifts with views over the city, and see the Snowhill estate’s 220m long ’living wall’, the largest in Europe.

Anthony Leonard, director of Hines, said: “Traditionally, office buildings are off limits to anyone but their owners and tenants.

“We wanted to share the building and its public realm with the local community and the people of the city, particularly given that, post credit crunch, the delivery of a new building outside London has become such a rarity.”

Richard Probert, commercial sales and letting manager (UK) for Ballymore, said: “Opening up a building to the public was a first for the development team and, so far as we are aware, the first time the public has been given free access to a private commercial property of this size in the city centre. It was a hugely ambitious undertaking, but we have been overwhelmed with the reaction to both the building and the show.”

Stan’s Cafe’s award-winning show ‘Of All The People In All The World’, a performance installation which uses grains of rice to represent people and population statistics, has toured the world to critical acclaim. The show marked its tenth anniversary at Two Snowhill, using 23 tonnes of rice, representing 1.5bn people.

James Yarker, founder and artistic director of Stan’s Cafe, said: “We are delighted with the number of people who came to see the show and their overwhelmingly enthusiastic response. Two Snowhill proved a fantastic setting for the performance; its architecture complemented our piles of rice and the fantastic views over North Birmingham inspired us as we developed themes for the show.

“We are grateful to Hines and Ballymore for giving us the opportunity to mark Of All The People In All The World’s tenth anniversary with this landmark performance and look forward to its next ten years.”

Two Snowhill is one of only two 200,000 sq ft+ buildings that will be delivered outside London this year. 185,000 sq ft has been let to Wragge & Co; 118,000 sq ft of office space remains available to let, plus 7,000 sq ft of retail/leisure space.

CBRE and GBR Phoenix Beard are joint agents on the office accommodation; Colliers International are marketing the retail space.