Complete! First phase of West Bromwich’s Urban Greening Project19th December 2022
The first phase of works on the Urban Greening Project in West Bromwich is complete. This project is designed to improve green spaces and boost the wellbeing of local people.
The Urban Greening Project began in August this year, as part of the West Bromwich Town Deal. The latter is rejuvenating the town centre with £1.22m in support from the government’s Towns Fund.
The Towns Fund in Sandwell is close to the hearts of the Sandwell Business Ambassadors. You can read about our involvement here.
Restorations, ‘parklets’ and traffic-reduction measures
Thanks to this investment in West Bromwich, Sandwell Council has improved the Princess Parade / Bull Street section of High Street. Enhancements include the restoration of Farley Fountain and Dartmouth Clock Tower. Both are redecorated now in fresh green, blue and gold heritage colours.
Dartmouth Square also has an improved look and feel, with new paving, winter cherry blossom and liquidambar trees and seating. This area will link into Phase 2 of the Urban Greening Project. Phase 2 incorporates Bull Street and the Towns Fund West Bromwich Connected Project along Spon Lane. Both of these projects are due to start in early 2023.
Other completed works in West Bromwich include:
• The renewal and repair of existing paving slabs along Princess Parade and additional repair works along Duchess Parade
• Four new seating structures (‘parklets’), planted with bee and butterfly friendly plants, shrubs and flowers. The planters were made in the Black Country
• A new play space along High Street, with a small range of play equipment for toddlers and a space for children to run around safely on the new rubber crumb floor. The rubber crumb is Nike Grind: recycled trainers turned into playground flooring
• New bins, benches and traffic-reduction measures. Sandwell Council will be looking at further measures to reduce the presence of vehicles along the High Street
• New hoarding artwork along Bull Street, funded by the West Midlands Combined Authority and completed by ‘Window Artists’, based in Birmingham. It includes cultural references to West Bromwich and its history.
West Bromwich will also have lighting upgrades in the new year, including new LED light fittings on re-painted columns and a colour-changing light system.
‘Economic, environmental and health benefits’
As part of the project, West Bromwich community arts organisation Multistory will launch a cultural programme. Engaging with local communities, schools and businesses, Multistory will reflect on topics that include wildlife, nature and skills.
Councillor Peter Hughes is Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for Regeneration and Growth. He said: “I am delighted to see the completion of Phase 1 of this exciting project to rejuvenate the town centre and provide local people with economic, environmental and health benefits.
“The improved appearance will also help lift perceptions of the town and hopefully bring more footfall to the High Street.
“Our contractors, working with other suppliers from the Black Country, have done well to deliver these works to schedule, and we expect to see the remaining improvements completed on time and with minimal inconvenience to the public.”
‘A place people want to visit again and again’
Chris Hinson is Chair of West Bromwich Town Deal Board and one of our Sandwell Business Ambassadors.
She said: “This project is just the first step in the renovation and reinvigoration of West Bromwich town centre. The excellent work delivered here will help us achieve our longer term aims to create a better environment in which we live and work, unlocking new sites for development, creating educational and career opportunities and transforming our high street into a place people want to visit again and again”.
Visit www.regeneratingsandwell.co.uk for more information on Towns Fund and other regeneration projects across Sandwell’s six towns.
Pictured: Chris Hinson [left] with Councillor Peter Hughes, by the newly restored Farley Fountain in West Bromwich.