SANDWELL SITE: ‘Neglected’ land set for apartments boost
New “high-quality” apartments could be built on a vandalism hotspot to help boost Smethwick town centre.
Representatives for the developer said the proposal would bring regeneration benefits to the town centre and deal with a problem site.
If agreed, the new block would be three storey building with several two-bedroom apartments on each floor, along with car parking, cycle storage and amenity space.
In the application, planning agent JBVJ Architects said: “The proposal offers the the re-development of a neglected site within Smethwick Town Centre.
“The proposals seek to produce a high quality, contemporary residential development on a neglected and derelict site that is bound by Tollhouse Way and Chatwin Street.
“The proposal seeks to demolish the existing derelict garage buildings and create a development that is complimentary to the existing architectural vernacular and massing whilst addressing the inactive frontage that the site currently presents.
“The existing nature of the site created an inactive element within the street frontage and provides a hotspot for vandalism, fly-tipping and vehicular shortcuts from the Tollhouse Way.
“The very nature of the site and its remoteness ensures the site (does not have) surveillance, creating an unsafe area for pedestrians to use Chatwin Street.
“By providing an active and suitable proposal on the site the area becomes naturally surveillance, eliminates the remoteness, and prevents vehicles cutting across the site.
“The scheme has been developed with the Local Authority to a point where we feel the scheme presents an appropriate use, amount, massing and architectural vernacular to sit well within its context.
“Through appropriate analysis and design development the proposal will provide a positive contribution to the street scene and offers economic benefits and high quality housing contributing to the growth of Smethwick.”
The proposal is currently being considered by planners at Sandwell Council.
Words: Gurdip Thandi, Local Democracy Reporter
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