News

Residents’ views sought over northern area of North Solihull

(5th June 2007)

Residents who live in the northern area of North Solihull, namely Smith's Wood and Kingshurst, are being invited to have their say about how the area should be regenerated, looking at everything from transport links to green spaces, schools and village centres.

The aim of the consultation is to discuss with people in more detail some of the things in the North Solihull Strategic Framework that was agreed by Solihull Council in February 2005, following public consultation. The Strategic Framework sets out how the North Solihull Partnership intends to improve the physical and social infrastructure of the region through major investment.

Topics to be further debated include things like whether there should be another allotment site, what type of homes should be built where, and where sports facilities should be located. The consultation area is bounded by Lanchester Parkin the most northern point, and by Cooks Lane in the point furthest south. 

Sarah Barnes, Regeneration Programme Manager at Solihull Council, said: "Local residents have been fully involved at every step of the decision making process of the Regenerating North Solihull project. We want the regeneration process to be shaped by those who will actually be living and working in the area. Schools, transport links, and green spaces are all such emotive issues for communities, and this project relies on the guidance of local people.

"£1.8billion is going to be invested in North Solihull over the next fifteen years, and the way in which this money is spent can be shaped by the public. Getting people's opinions is crucial to us and we urge every individual to make their voice heard by coming to one of our consultation days."

Consultations are being held between 9.30am and 4.30pm on Thursday 7th June at Kingshurst Parade, and then from Monday 11th June until Friday 15th June in Chelmsley Wood Town Centre. On Saturday 16th June, consultations will take place between 10am and 1pm, again in Chelmsley Wood Town Centre.

The consultation process is step one of the Regenerating North Solihull Area Strategy, which looks at the major proposals for the vicinity (such as schools and green spaces) within the Strategic Framework to see if the proposals can be developed more fully before they go into Neighbourhood Plans (which look at things such as parking and housing layout).

The Area Strategy is not about changing things that have already been confirmed in detailed Neighbourhood Plans, such as those for North Arran Way, Craig Croft, Kingshurst & Babb's Mill, but instead looks at how neighbourhoods are connected to each other, and how residents can best access facilities. Once complete, subsequent Neighbourhood Plans will then be worked up and will go through the normal planning process.

The North Solihull Partnership reports that more than 550 residents from the south area of North Solihull have already put forward suggestions for how they would like to see their locality improved. People said they want to see improved village centres and improvements to Chelmsley Wood Town Centre, as well as better public transport and cycle links to the NEC and Birmingham International Airport, both of which are located very close to the regeneration area.

Local people also wanted to see improvements to parks, play areas and new sports facilities built. The Partnership took the suggestions on board and intends to create five new village centres, work with Travel West Midlands to improve the bus service, and provide more recreation areas.

Regenerating North Solihull will also see the construction of 8,000 new homes, improvements to 12,500 more, 10 new primary schools created and significant improvements to the transport infrastructure. The North Solihull Partnership that is delivering the project comprises a consortium made up of Solihull Council, registered social landlord Whitefriars Housing Group, regeneration specialists Inpartnership and house builder Bellway Homes.

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Press release drafted by Alun Thorne. For more information contact Core Marketing on 0121 643 8151.