WMCA receives £6m to shift Birmingham steelworks into industrial park

The West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) has approved a £6 million investment to support the construction of a new industrial park on the site of a derelict steelworks in north Birmingham.

Working alongside industrial property developer Chancerygate, the development of Minworth Industrial Park will transform the former Steel Plates and Sections site off Forge Lane. Once complete, it is expected to have a gross development value of £11m and create more than 140 new jobs.

The scheme will provide 72,000 sq ft of much-needed industrial and trade counter space across 11 units, ranging from 4,466 sq ft to 12,701 sq ft. It will also bring more than three acres of brownfield land back into economic use, helping to relieve pressure to build on the region’s green belt.

The development is the latest in a series of WMCA investments to breathe new life into former industrial sites, by cleaning up and unlocking brownfield land to provide new homes, jobs and much-needed space as the region looks to grow its logistics and manufacturing sectors.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “I am absolutely delighted that we have been able to help unlock yet another scheme that creates local jobs for local people, whilst regenerating brownfield land and protecting the precious greenbelt.

“Despite the pandemic the WMCA has continued to invest its cash in remediating brownfield land, helping to drive our region’s recovery by creating jobs and building high-quality, truly-affordable homes.”

Cllr Mike Bird, leader of Walsall Council and WMCA portfolio holder for Housing and Land, added: “Across the region, we’re seeing derelict sites like this transformed from eyesores into valuable assets that help drive economic recovery and we’re committed continuing that positive change.”

Chancerygate development director and head of the company’s Birmingham office, Mark Garrity, said, “We’re very pleased to be working with the West Midlands Combined Authority to deliver Forge Industrial Park.

“The development will provide highly sought-after Grade-A freehold industrial space and is best placed to meet the evolving needs of businesses.

“We are seeing significant interest in units and look forward to completing our work to regenerate the site into a high-quality urban logistics hub – creating jobs and opportunity across the region.”

The Minworth site was previously occupied by Steel Plates and Sections Limited and is just over four miles from Sutton Coldfield town centre and eight miles northeast of Birmingham city centre. Once developed the new industrial park is expected to generate business rates of around £300,000 a year.

WMCA’s strategic approach to transforming existing brownfield land into new homes, communities, and businesses is part of the wider drive for sustainable regeneration that is socially and economically impactful, for both businesses and the local community.

Access to the WMCA funding was provided by the Property Team at Frontier Development Capital Ltd (FDC). FDC continues to work closely with property developers to arrange investments from the WMCA’s Collective Investment Fund (CIF) and Revolving Investment Fund (RIF).

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