Ambitious plans have been put forward to build a brand-new 1,500-home neighbourhood.

Columba Park would be situated on fields between Queslett Road and Doe Bank Lane in Great Barr and Aldridge Road in Streetly .

The huge 82-hectare estate "would provide inter-connectivity between the communities of Streetly and Pheasey".

The field is currently used agriculturally and for grazing.

It has been put forward by the Black Country Core Strategy to potentially "deliver new homes to meet the housing needs of both Walsall and the wider Black Country".

In 2017, the Birmingham Local Plan housing shortfall stood at 37,900 while, in the Black Country, there is "a need for 78,190 dwellings between 2014 and 2036 of which 24,670 may need to be found within the current green belt".

A proposal document for Columba Park reads: "The site gives an opportunity to create a new neighbourhood which delivers real health and wellbeing gains and economic benefits for both existing and new residents.

The fields where proposals have been put forward to build 1500-home Columba Park
The fields where proposals have been put forward to build 1500-home Columba Park

"This includes significant high-quality public open space and green infrastructure, well designed homes, and new community facilities."

According to Walsall Council, "no decision has been made about the merits of any site and no planning applications have been submitted".

A spokesman added: "This is one of a number of sites put forward for the Black Country councils to consider.

"Once we have completed an initial technical assessment of all the sites, we will be carrying out a public consultation about the sites and the rest of the proposals in the draft Plan.

 

"At present the published timetable says this might take place late 2019, but it seems likely this could be delayed."

Streetly councillors Suky Samra, Douglas Maul and local candidate Sat Johal have been delivering leaflets to residents this week.

They said: "We, as your councillors and activists, will fight any development and protect our precious green belt if it was ever threatened.

"The proposal is not the subject of a planning application.

Artist's impression of Columba Park, between Sutton Coldfield and Great Barr
Artist's impression of Columba Park, between Sutton Coldfield and Great Barr

"Rather, the area is being put forward by a land promoter seeking its possible allocation through future work on the council's Local Plan (the review of the existing Black Country Core Strategy).

"Officers understand there have been enquiries and discussions in social media about the possibility of large-scale development (1500 homes - which the promoter is calling Columba Park) on land between Doe Bank Lane and Aldridge Road, north of Queslett Road.

 

"This is being promoted in response to a 'call for sites' exercise by the 4 Black Country authorities (Dudley, Sandwell and Wolverhampton, as well as Walsall), who are required by the Government to have an up-to-date plan for development to meet the projected growth needs of the area."

Columba Park would be situated between Doe Bank Park, Barr Beacon Local Nature Reserve and Sutton Park in Sutton Coldfield.

The fields where proposals have been put forward to build 1500-home Columba Park
The fields where proposals have been put forward to build 1500-home Columba Park

The development, subject to planning permission, would take an estimated eight years to complete and would cost around £200 million.

A document prepared by promoters IM Land reads: "This plan demonstrates the potential for a cohesive sustainable place, attractive to residents, visitors and wildlife. It envisages a scale of housing development that:

• Delivers approximately 1500 new homes and an extensive area of parkland and public open space

• Makes significant contribution to strategic growth ambitions and meets evidenced housing needs

 

• Balances built form and open landscape, creating a substantial parkland that can act as a major recreation asset

• Enhances landscape quality, wildlife value and biodiversity

• Creates and improves pedestrian and cycle links within and between existing communities

• Responds to natural topographic characteristics, shaping and enhancing local views

Artist's impression of Columba Park, between Sutton Coldfield and Great Barr
Artist's impression of Columba Park, between Sutton Coldfield and Great Barr

• Can properly address the park, providing valuable frontages and a safe environment

• Can contribute to the health and wellbeing of existing and new residents.

No decision has been made about Columba Park. Public consultations are scheduled to take place at the end of 2019.

The Black Country Core Strategy is a planning and regeneration plan for the whole of the Black Country, which is signed up to by the four Black Country Councils.

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The Strategy is now being reviewed to meet the new challenges and opportunities for the coming years, up to 2036.

The review will plan for the area's future development needs and ensure the necessary services are in place to meet these local needs, along with making sure that the necessary level of investment is attracted to create jobs and wealth in the Black Country.

To view the plan click here . A map showing the location can be viewed here .