The Public

The Public

Not a name for a new newspaper or charity or a headline but the name of a building at the heart of the regeneration of West Bromwich. It houses a public gallery as well as a theatre, recording studios, creative office space, event space and a cafe bar. The ambition is to provide a creative hub and social centre for Sandwell.

It is an impressive building – full of colour and curves – with a roof that opens itself upto the sky. Its much more than this external photograph:

or this close up view:

┬áIt would be easy to be cynical – and I do not know what the residents will make of it. Two years late and nearly 15 million over budget the project has cost 53 million. Was it worth it? Yes! Attracting a variety of artists the folks of this deprived borough deserve some creative innovation often reserved for the cities and the rich.

Will it work? I hope so – but that will depend upon how the place opens itself up to the many voices and perspectives of its users. I wish the project well. her is the secret of all of these innovations:

Good luck Sandwell in its regeneration.

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