The plans have been submitted by Hammerson plc, the owner of Birmingham’s Grand Central shopping centre and half-owner of Birmingham’s Bullring shopping centre. The proposed development could generate millions of pounds of investment and create hundreds of new jobs in the area.
The proposal includes the construction of retail units, associated food units, a 555-space customer car park, a new signal controlled junction to Bromford Road, and various public realm improvement works, such as soft landscaping and enhanced pedestrian and cycle links.
The scheme, if approved, would do much to improve the urban landscape of Oldbury, which has suffered some industrial decline in recent years.
The planning brief prepared by architects Stephen George & Partners, on behalf of Hammerson, states: “Our client has determined that there is sufficient demand for development of both food and non-food retail space in this location for units with floor space upwards of 464m².
“The retails units will be of sufficient height and volume to accommodate mezzanine floors – similar to the additional floorspace created at the nearby Homebase and Next stores.
“The expectations of retailers and their customers alike dictate a layout whose disposition maximises visibility of the shop entrances and which has immediate access to car parking. This needs to be arranged in a clearly legible and familiar format.
“The proposal should respect the site’s key location in its relationship to Oldbury town centre and also strive to make a positive contribution to its local environment through the quality of design.”
The proposed site for the retail scheme was previously the home of Hunt Brothers Griffin Foundry, which was demolished in 2003 to make way for a larger retail and leisure development that never came to fruition.
No specific retailers are yet attached to the scheme but Hammerson is experienced in the development of such retail parks having built similar examples elsewhere in the UK and Europe, so it is sure to attract major retailers.
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