WMCA Invests Over £6.5 Million to Help Develop New Industrial Park

Million pound investment from the WMCA to develop a new industrial park on a brownfield site at Darlaston Enterprise Zone in Walsall.

Work has started on transforming another swathe of derelict brownfield land into a new industrial park following a £6.5m investment by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA).

Property developer St Francis Group has begun construction of a 113,000 sqft industrial unit in the Darlaston Enterprise Zone in Walsall, creating more than 195 new jobs.

The scheme, called Parallel 113, is a key part of the wider Black Country Enterprise Zone which is being led by the Black Country LEP and aims to unlock and redevelop nearly 300 acres of former industrial land, delivering 3,000 new jobs.

The Parallel 113 site is the size of 10 football pitches and will be just a five-minute walk from the new Darlaston railway station – a project being led by Transport for West Midlands (TfWM), which is part of the WMCA.

Andy Street said: “I am thrilled that we have helped to unlock another scheme to be developed in such a desirable location. It is great to see more industrial jobs being created in the Black Country.

“Nearby we are also developing Darlaston Railway Station and this is a clear example of how developing new transport links and providing better connectivity to an area can attract further investment and ultimately bring jobs. I am also looking forward to seeing further eye-catching developments like this in the future.”

Tom Westley, Chair of Black Country LEP, added: “This is a perfect example of not only delivering premium industrial space within the West Midlands but bringing the Black Country’s Enterprise Zone ambition to light and creating additional jobs in the local area.

“The Black Country LEP sees Parallel 113 as a huge improvement to the local economy allowing us to continue to establish the Black Country as an ideal place for businesses and communities to thrive.”

St Francis Group is a highly regarded brownfield land and regeneration specialist with a growing reputation for developing high-quality industrial warehouse schemes across the UK.

Gareth Williams, St Francis Group development director, said: “We are delighted to have secured this investment. The start on site marks another opportunity to deliver another speculative Grade A industrial hub for the region, of market leading quality in such prominent location adjoining the M6 motorway.”

Cllr Mike Bird, WMCA portfolio holder for housing and land and leader of Walsall Council added: “This development of high-quality commercial warehousing will help create many new jobs for local people while regenerating another brownfield site.

“The WMCA is continuing to invest in the transformation of brownfield land to not only help preserve our green belt but also drive our region’s economic recovery by providing businesses with the places they need to grow.”

Access to the WMCA funding was provided by Frontier Development Capital who continue to work closely with property developers and the WMCA to manage investments from the WMCA Commercial and Residential Investment Funds.

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