Development of a new blue print for how land across the Black Country could be regenerated in future years moves a step forward today.

The government requires local authorities to have an up to date 15 year plan to meet the development needs of an area and reflect the aspirations of local communities.

The current plan lasts until 2026 and Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton councils are currently in the process of developing the Black Country Plan to 2038.

The plan is about making sure enough homes are built, the right homes in the right places for people of all incomes, and it supports a thriving economy for future generations by creating jobs and improving transport and infrastructure.

It also balances the need to plan for new homes and jobs with the need to continue to protect the important green and natural areas for people to enjoy.

As part of this process, up to date evidence has been collated on a number of areas, including housing, environment and employment to help identify key issues and ensure the Plan meets the development needs, challenges and opportunities for the region up to 2038.

This evidence has today been published at Draft Plan Consultation Preparations Reg.18.    

Leader of City of Wolverhampton Council, Councillor Ian Brookfield, said: “This is just the next phase in the process to develop a new regeneration plan for the Black Country and is something all local authorities have to do.

“Only 11% of land in Wolverhampton is green belt and keeping this green belt is hugely important to our new climate strategy and supporting our carbon neutral challenge.

“Our focus is on developing brownfield sites, which we have an excellent track record in doing when funding is available to remediate the land, such as Bilston Urban Village, Springfield Campus and Canalside.

“We have to submit evidence as part of the Black Country Plan process – but no decisions on sites have been made.

“While shaping the future of housing and the growth of businesses, we will do everything we can to protect our precious green spaces.”

The evidence collated includes a green belt assessment and landscape sensitivity assessment, a historic landscape characterisation study, site assessment methodology summary, minerals and waste studies, utilities capacity study and an ecological study.

No decisions have yet been made about any sites. 

The draft Black Country Plan, previously known as the Black Country Core Strategy, is due to go out for public consultation in late 2020.

Once adopted, the strategy will outline where new homes and businesses should be built in the 4 Black Country boroughs to 2038.