Developing a regeneration masterplan in Walsall
Walsall is a historic market town in the heart of the West Midlands. Regional improvements are increasing the overall connectivity across the Black Country, including Walsall, with recent investment to infrastructure including new direct trains to London and a commitment to re-open the link to Wolverhampton.
Over the last 10 years, Walsall has secured over £425m of investment; delivering over 85,00sqm of floorspace across a variety of uses (including retail, leisure, office, health and education) and securing more than 2,500 new jobs, as well as 300+ new homes.
As part of the transformation to the area, our work to develop the masterplan builds upon a strong evidence base to develop a bold vision for the future of Walsall Town Centre that responds to the current challenging environment and raises aspirations for the whole town. The masterplan
will provide a framework for sustained economic growth, supporting the Council’s priorities in the town centre.
An investible and deliverable masterplan for a changing high street
Arcadis was appointed by Walsall Council to develop a bold vision for the future of Walsall Town Centre and prepare a comprehensive regeneration masterplan
, exploring development opportunities, centred on its historic high street and role as a regional market town. The masterplan area covers approximately 116 hectares of the town centre and has the potential to provide more than 900 new homes, 5km of green links and introducing a new Creative Quarter, whilst enhancing the existing historic character of the area.
There are significant opportunities across the town centre to create a mix of traditional and alternative uses, including retail and entertainment offers which complement and enhance the existing cultural, architectural and environmental assets, including the renowned arboretum. This presents a unique opportunity to enhance the diversity of Walsall as a place to live, work and enjoy.
Arcadis provided project and development management, planning, regeneration masterplanning and urban design, landscape and public realm design, heritage, flood risk, environment, engineering and infrastructure consultancy to develop an investible delivery plan in support of the masterplan.
The masterplan vision, developed by the Council and key stakeholders, articulates the bold ambition for the future of Walsall Town Centre. Walsall will be the healthiest town centre in the country, the town of choice for visitors from across the borough and beyond with a re-imagined, bold and economically successful high street which blends a strong heritage identity and character with aspirational iconic buildings and public spaces. The town will provide a balanced residential, retail, leisure, cultural, educational and business core within a connected, vibrant environment which meets the needs of a diverse and healthy population who chose to live and work in the town centre.
Funding and Delivery
Arcadis provided potential funding advice and guidance to Walsall Council, with improvements for business, place and people at the forefront of delivery. An intervention strategy has been developed, prioritising projects of the greatest benefit and outlining short term and long-term goals dependent on the available funding.
The masterplan will inform plan-making and decision-taking across Walsall, in accordance with existing policies including the Area Action Plan. It sets out the key next steps for realising the potential of Walsall Town Centre.
A number of case study areas were examined in detail, within the wider town centre. These areas were all developed to a greater level of detail to enhance the evidence base which supported the masterplan framework and identification of ten key interventions for the town centre, as a whole.
Using the evidence developed to support the masterplan Walsall has now been successful in progressing to the next stage of the Future High Street Fund process. Arcadis are proud to be working with Walsall on their business case which will enable the plans to be implemented quickly to transform the town centre and Improve Quality of Life in Walsall.