24 September 2014
The Birmingham Green Party has called for councillors to consider alternatives for undeveloped land in Stirchley, after plans for a proposed Tesco site failed to materialise.
Bournville ward residents are understandably annoyed over news that a new Tesco supermarket will not be open there until at least 2017: 16 years after it was first proposed.
The project, on Hazelwell Lane in Stirchley, has been controversial from day one with Stirchley Community Centre and the City of Birmingham Indoor Bowls Centre having been evicted in order to free up the land. The site’s current state is having a negative impact as it is now being used by fly-tippers and has become a dumping ground for old fridges and freezers. Local business owners have told the Party that it is even affecting sales as the area is now a ghost town.
Local councillors seem determined that the Tesco store must be built, but the Birmingham Greens are asking if alternative uses – which will actually benefit the community – should now be considered.
BGP campaigner, Alan Clawley, said: ‘We know that elsewhere Tesco is thinking about using some of its huge landbank for housing instead of supermarkets. We think a new housing development could be very popular. And rather than building on green belt land in the city, we say: why not use this existing land instead?
“At the very least, the Council should consider some alternatives and look at the feasibility of using the land for the benefit of the community.”