Draft Black Country Plan

Ended on the 11 October 2021

(21)2 The Black Country 2039: Spatial Vision, Strategic Objectives and Strategic Priorities

What is driving the Vision for the Black Country?

2.1 The Vision reflects what the Black Country will be like in the future if the needs and aspirations of those who live, work in or visit the area are to be met, whilst also ensuring that it retains the characteristics that make it attractive and distinctive. It also needs to be flexible, to allow authorities to respond to future challenges in a way that is right for the Black Country, its residents and its businesses.

2.2 The Vision has been written in the context of the national, regional and local policy frameworks.

(22)Vision for the Black Country

2.3 The Black Country Plan is the spatial planning document for the wider ambitions and goals of the BCA and their partners. By implementing the policies in the Black Country Plan, the Councils will guide investment and development to 2039 by:

"Creating a prosperous, stronger and sustainable Black Country"

2.4 The Vision will be delivered via progress towards the achievement of eight objectives. The relationship between these objectives is illustrated in Figure 1 below.

(3)Figure 1 Relationship between Vision and Objectives


Climate Change


Housing that meets all our needs

Create a prosperous, stronger, and sustainable Black Country

Promoting sustainable transport and active travel

Improving the Health and Wellbeing of residents and promoting social inclusion

Enhancing our natural and built environment

Enabling a strong, stable, and inclusive economy

Meeting our resource and infrastructure needs


Enhancing the vitality of our centres



2.5 To assist in the delivery of the vision and objectives, the following strategic priorities have been identified, which then form the basis of individual policies contained in the BCP. These priorities directly address the key strategic challenges and opportunities that have arisen since the Core Strategy was adopted in 2011, as outlined in paragraph 1.40.

(22)Table 1 – Black Country Plan - Objectives and Strategic Priorities


Strategic Priority


Climate Change

Strategic Priority 1: To mitigate and adapt to climate change to protect the people, environment and economy of the Black Country and meet wider national and international obligations

CSP1; CSP4; HOU1; ENV2; ENV4; ENV8; ENV9; CC1 – CC6; HW1; HW3

Strategic Priority 2: To adapt to and minimise the impact of Climate Change by reducing carbon emissions, maximising the use of low carbon energy solutions, seeking to reduce the impact of flooding, and enhancing the Black Country's Green and Blue Infrastructure

CSP1; GB1; TRAN3; TRAN5; TRAN6; TRAN8; ENV3; ENV4; ENV8; CC1 – CC6; HW1; HW3

Housing that meets all our needs


Strategic Priority 3: to provide a range and choice of accommodation, house types and tenures to meet the needs of current and future residents


Strategic Priority 4: to improve and diversify the Black Country housing offer


Improving the Health and Wellbeing of residents and promoting social inclusion

Strategic Policy 5: To provide a built and natural environment that supports the making of healthier choices through provision for physical activity and recreation, active travel, encouraging social interaction and discouraging harmful behaviours.

CSP1; CSP5; HW1 – HW3; CEN5; TRAN5; TRAN8; ENV8; ENV9; CC4;

Strategic Policy 6: To provide a built and natural environment that protects health and wellbeing through minimising pollution (air, noise and other forms), providing healthy homes, reducing the negative health effects of climate change and providing streets safe for active, low emission travel for all.

CC4; W3; W4; MIN4

Enabling a strong, stable and inclusive economy


Strategic Priority 7: To provide a balanced portfolio of employment sites and to protect and enhance existing sustainable employment areas to support the development of key employment sectors and enable existing businesses to expand


Strategic Priority 8: to enable communities to share the benefits of economic growth through securing access to new job opportunities and enhanced skills and training programmes.


Enhancing the vitality of our centres


Strategic Priority 9: To enhance the vitality, diversification and performance of town centres, to serve the current and future needs of communities as places to live, shop, work and visit.

CSP2; CSP5; CEN1 – CEN6;

Promoting sustainable transport & active travel

Strategic Priority 10: To prioritise sustainable and active travel and seek to improve transport infrastructure to ensure efficient and sustainable accessibility within an integrated network


Enhancing our natural & built environment


Strategic Priority 11: To protect and enhance the natural environment, biodiversity, wildlife corridors geological resources, countryside, and landscapes, whilst ensuring that residents have good access to interlinked green infrastructure

ENV1 – ENV9; HW1; HW3

Strategic Priority 12: To protect, sustain and enhance the quality of the built and historic environment whilst ensuring the delivery of distinctive and attractive places


Meeting our resource and infrastructure needs


Strategic Priority 13: To manage waste as a resource and minimise the amount produced and sent to landfill

W1 – W5

Strategic Priority 14: To safeguard and make the most sustainable use of the Black Country's mineral resources without significantly compromising environmental quality


Strategic Priority 15: To ensure the Black Country has the infrastructure in place to support its existing and future growth and prosperity



Ensuring delivery of the vision, objectives, and strategic priorities

2.6 Primarily, the Vision, objectives and strategic priorities set out above will be delivered via the application of the policies of this Plan. Table 1 above sets out which policies will be most important in delivering each strategic priority. The monitoring section at the end of each chapter identifies targets for key indicators that will need to be achieved if these policies are to be successful.



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