Eyesore Wednesbury shops to be bulldozed in transformation plans
Dilapidated shops will be torn down and replaced with a new retail block under plans to transform a run-down part of Wednesbury.
Council bosses said the 'eyesore' shops at the junction of Carrington Road and School Road in Friar Park had blighted the area for years and investment was badly needed to improve the look of the area.
Plans for a new 225 sq m block, featuring shops and flats, have been revealed in order to clean up an area regarded as a blot on the landscape.
The row of shops have been in a 'state of decline for several years' and become a magnet for anti-social behaviour.
Twelve bungalows would also be built on nearby Friardale Close, which has regularly been targeted by fly-tippers.
Ward councillors said they had been trying for 15 years to get rid of the row of shops.
Existing businesses on the shopping parade would be offered the chance to move into the new retail building, Sandwell Council.
Joy Edis, councillor for Friar Park, said she was delighted the shops were finally going to be replaced.
She said: "We've been campaigning for 15 years for something to be done and it finally looks like it is going to happen.
"This is really great news for people of the Friar Park ward. It has been terrible for all these years living by them.
"It will be marvellous for the area and much better. It's long overdue."
A council report said: "The re-use of under-utilised land and demolition of derelict properties and the rebuilding of new council retail units and homes at this location of Friar Park will address long-standing anti-social behaviour issues and have a positive impact on the fortunes of this deprived neighbourhood.
"The visual transformation will create a new sense of place which has been lacking for many years from Carrington Road thus offering a better environment for local residents to operate within removing the anti-social behaviour attributed to dereliction and vacant land."
It continued: "The condition and appearance of the shops is poor and has been deteriorating over a number of years. Council intervention is required to remove this eyesore and ensure that a comprehensive regeneration solution is brought forward."
The middle part of the parade was demolished in 2011 due to structural concerns, leaving behind the remaining run-down units.
The council said it would need enter into negotiations to bring some of the units into its ownership before they could be demolished.