Brownfield Research & Innovation Centre (BRIC)

The Black Country contains the largest concentration of high value manufacturing jobs in England, to achieve further grow for businesses a portfolio of employment sites need to be released across the region.

There are also over 550 housing sites available within the region to deliver 45,000 new homes. The development of strategic sites both for employment and housing land is one of the key priorities identified within the Strategic Economic Plan and City Deal.

The Black Country LEP has therefore identified the need to explore the barriers associated with brownfield land development, due in large part to the areas industrial heritage and mining legacy. In 2015 a feasibility showed that the market would benefit from, and support, the development of a centre of excellence in brownfield development. 2016 has seen the LEP and the University of Wolverhampton work together to develop the Brownfield Research & Innovation Centre (BRIC) which will be based at the new Springfield Campus. BRIC will bring together academia with key public and private sector stakeholders to develop cost effective and sustainable solutions to brownfield development. The proposed functions of BRIC include:

  • Data Centre – a centralised database of geotechnical, geochemical, geophysical, economic and ecological data associated with site development, to allow more robust phase 1 and phase 2 site investigations to be delivered, reducing developer uncertainty and providing more accurate remediation costings.
  • Information Hub – will offer advice and guidance on site remediation based on previous experience and real life case studies. 
  • Guidance Collaborative – informal lobbying function to Government to limit the over specification of sites
  • Brownfield Resource – pooling what limited specialist resources the local authorities have within this field to provide greater impact across the region.

For further information, please contact Andrew Stott on 01384 471163.