Development of Buildwas, Tern Hill and M54 sites set to be discussed
Shropshire Council is set to work with other councils, local communities and other groups to develop proposals to create jobs, housing and improved infrastructure local services at the former Ironbridge Power Station, at Buildwas; at Clive Barracks, Tern Hill; and on land near Junction 3 of the M54.
A report to Cabinet next week (Wednesday 20 March 2019) asks that councillors agree to this work. Subsequent proposals would then be presented to Cabinet to consider later this year as part of the Preferred Strategic Sites consultation being carried out as part of the council’s Local Plan review.
The report says that such engagement will help Harworth – owners of the power station – to prepare a draft masterplan for a mixed-use scheme which would provide employment land and around 1,000 homes, together with local services and facilities.
Likewise, it would help the Ministry of Defence and its consultants to prepare a draft masterplan for a mixed-use scheme at Tern Hill which would provide employment land and between 600-700 homes, together with local services and facilities.
Meanwhile, the report says that recent work commissioned by Shropshire Council suggests that the M54/A5 corridor is a significant opportunity area and that there is considerable demand for serviced employment land. It envisages that any strategic employment offer in the M54 corridor would be strongly related to the intensification of engineering training at RAF Cosford, and could help address cross-boundary development needs.
The report says that the delivery of a strategic employment site in the M54 corridor would need to be accompanied by some additional housing to ensure its ability to be delivered and to limit the transport impact of additional journeys to work. It says that around 3,000 houses are likely to be required, as part of a new planned settlement in the Green Belt near Cosford.
Robert Macey, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for planning and housing development, said:
“The current Local Plan review is designed to help ensure that the Local Plan will remain the starting point and platform for planning decisions during the period to 2036. The council’s preferred sites to deliver Shropshire’s housing requirements were published for public consultation in October 2018. However, whilst these requirements can mainly be met from sites within existing settlements, a small number of larger mixed-use strategic sites are also being promoted in the county.
“These proposals provide opportunities to increase the productivity and output of the local economy and meet the objectives of Shropshire’s Economic Growth Strategy. These proposals are across three such strategic sites, that would generate new investment in employment, increasing the number but also the quality of jobs locally, and provide additional housing, improved infrastructure and local services.”