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West Midlands HS2 interchange station development granted up to £20m

The West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) has agreed to fund up to £20m for a UK Central Hub in Solihull alongside the HS2 station development.

The plans to develop the new HS2 Interchange Station within the 340-acre Arden Cross are beginning to progress. The combined authority has just approved funding for upgrade work on the key access point to the station and surrounding area. This will allow for future widening of a new roundabout being built by HS2 Ltd over the railway line.

WMCA have settled on a deal of £19.95m to be awarded to the West Midlands plan to widen the access road to this vital interchange.

The Hub is essential for connecting people throughout the country and provides essential economic growth in the West Midlands, including a number of internationally important businesses and organisations, namely Birmingham Airport, Jaguar Land Rover and Birmingham Business Park.

The Hub also includes the 340-acre Arden Cross development site, which will be home to the new HS2 Interchange Station.

The money will provide improvements to the key access point to the station, making the Arden Cross site even more essential in terms of economic value.

Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street said: “The UK Central Hub is one of the country’s most important economic growth areas and has substantial expansion plans. I am very pleased that the WMCA Board has approved funding for this key infrastructure project in Solihull.

“The development is vital for us to make The Hub one of the best-connected commercial, industrial and residential zones in the country, with unrivalled rail, road and air links. It is a true game-changer for the West Midlands.”

There will also be a widening of the new roundabout to be built by HS2 Ltd over the railway line. The new and improved size of the roundabout will accommodate and support additional traffic in the area created by HS2 and lead to regional growth.

Situated perfectly, the roundabout will also serve as the main access route to Arden Cross, ensuring there is plenty of capacity for housing and office space with the projected job creation to be at 6,400, generating up to £426m GVA per year.

The Urban Growth Company, set up by Solihull Council, is currently co-ordinating the growth plans and lead infrastructure investment and development with support from local, regional and central government.

Jonathan Bretherton, managing director at the Urban Growth Company said: “Crucially, this improved infrastructure will make Arden Cross extremely attractive as an investment opportunity, appealing to high-value manufacturing, advanced research and development and associated academia, which in turn will generate the jobs of tomorrow.  

“It’s also a really good example of the region working with HS2 to make the most of the high-speed rail opportunity for the benefit of local people and local businesses.”   

General HS2 Ltd plans include building a three-lane roundabout to carry the A452 over the new HS2 railway track. This additional funding will allow for a potential fourth lane on the bridges. Traffic signals will ensure the junction operates safely and additional earthworks around the roundabout ready for ease of adjustment or improvement. This is being planned into the project now so there is no additional cost or major disruption at a later stage.

Early preparatory has already begun and more advanced work anticipated to start next year (2020).


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