City of Wolverhampton Council is putting plans in place for another major Bilston Urban Village development that could enable the delivery of up to 300 jobs for the city - and vital business rates revenue.
A report to be heard at the council’s Cabinet Resources Panel meeting on Wednesday, September 9 is proposing the disposal to a delivery partner of 17 acres of brownfield land identified for employment use to provide at least 100,000 square feet of industrial/commercial space.
The site is situated at the East of Bilston Urban Village, to the rear of Morrisons supermarket, and borders the Midland Metro to the east and Bankfield Road to the west – with quick connections to Junction 10 of the M6 via The Black Country Route.
There is demand from businesses requiring high-quality premises and market testing last year indicated a number of developers interested in building out the site for employment purposes.
Bilston Urban Village has been created following multi-million-pound investment by City of Wolverhampton Council, Homes England and the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership to remediate brownfield land through a range of major works, including the site clearance, former factory floors being broken up, the old railway embankment removed, treatment of mineshafts and highways and drainage infrastructure being installed.
Significant, initial investment in Bilston Urban Village saw the building of the Bert Williams Leisure Centre and South Wolverhampton and Bilston Academy – improving health and increasing education and skills opportunities.
With the first residential phase of 78 Kier homes off Dudley Street now complete and people already moving into the larger Countryside development off Coseley Road, which will provide 420 homes across 27 acres, there is an increasing population right on the doorstep of the town centre.
A newly-built Marston’s family pub/restaurant, the White Rabbit, and the new Loxdale Primary School also form key components of Bilston Urban Village.
Extensive landscaping works also mean these destinations have been connected by 35 acres of green space, creating a conservation and recreation area accessible by a network of paths, including Bert Turner Boulevard, which leads into the heart of the town centre.
Councillor Stephen Simkins, Cabinet Member for City Economy, said:
“The disposal of this land for employment use is another critical piece of the Bilston Urban Village jigsaw.
“It is even more critical now to provide new opportunities for our residents as we look to recover economically from the impact of Covid-19.
“We are realising our vison of affordable urban living for hundreds of families - all right at the heart of Bilston.
“The urban village offers extensive areas of open space to enjoy on the doorstep, new schools for kids to learn in, a top-class leisure centre nearby, a new family pub/restaurant on tap and further investment planned for the town centre.
“It is also a great location with purpose-built transport connectivity and the new commercial plot will provide hundreds of jobs opportunities.
“Bilston Urban Village also shows why our work towards establishing a National Brownfield Institute at the University of Wolverhampton’s outstanding £100million Springfield Campus is so critical.
“This will help get more former industrial land ready for development, creating future employment sites and homes.”
The land has been assembled by the council over a number of years following a transfer of ownership from Homes England (formerly Homes and Communities Agency) and the acquisition of neighbouring scrapyards.
Full site investigations on the employment site have already been carried out thanks to funding through the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership.
Access is proposed off Brook Street and, with offices and general industrial use identified for the land rather than storage and distribution, the movement of heavy lorries is expected to be minimised.