Drug-plagued wasteland in Walsall to become housing

Neglected wasteland which has become a magnet for drugs and fly-tipping in Walsall will be transformed into a new housing development after plans were approved.

Artist's impression of proposed housing on land off Canalside Close in Walsall. Photo: Umaa Architecture Limited
Artist's impression of proposed housing on land off Canalside Close in Walsall. Photo: Umaa Architecture Limited

More than 30 houses and apartments will be built on land off Canalside Close and next to the Wyrley And Essington Canal in the Blakenall area.

Walsall Council’s planning committee unanimously gave the green light to the proposal by Keon Homes with no debate at a meeting on Monday.

In their application, the developers said the land was disused and had become overgrown with vegetation and therefore the housing would benefit the area.

A report to the committee said the plans had received the backing of former Blakenall ward councillor Ian Robertson who said: “Fully support - the area is a site for fly tipping and drug trafficking.”

The plans did attract opposition from bodies including the highways department and the Canal and River Trust but planning officers said these could be overcome and recommended approval subject to conditions being agreed.

The scheme will see three two-bedroom and 12 three-bedroom houses built on the site along with nine one-bed and nine two-bedroom apartments.

Agents Umaa Architecture Limited said: “A number of important design drivers have been identified through appraisal of the site’s local and strategic context.

“The design is driven by the key aspiration of creating a development that will be an asset to the area, developing a neglected and overgrown site for a residential use, enhancing the existing streetscape and developing a new residential setting, and complimenting the nearby context with a sensitive and well-detailed contemporary design.

“The applicants wish to develop the site in a way that will be well suited to its context (in an area of developing residential character) and in a way which will make a positive impact to the area in line with the allocated residential use.

“The proposal seeks to utilise the potential of the site and provide much needed high quality homes for the surrounding area and wider neighbourhood.

“Keon Homes, are an experienced housing developer and are partnered with a housing association to deliver this site as an affordable scheme.”

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