Brownfield is the term generally used to describe previously developed land, which may or may not be contaminated.
Recent Government objectives have initiated a move towards redevelopment of brownfield land in favour of greenfield sites (e.g. the Government target of 60% of new housing being developed on brownfield sites in Planning Policy Statement 3) to relieve the pressure on the countryside and greenbelt areas. Previously, the potential liabilities associated with brownfield development have resulted in an attitude of wariness. However, with careful consideration, and the right advice, it is possible to turn potential liabilities into an asset.
Brownfield Land in Dudley
The Borough has a long, impressive and extensive industrial heritage that has unfortunately resulted in a legacy of problems both at and below the surface. These problems may present significant risks to human health and to the wider environment, and also can be a barrier and/or additional cost to development.
In Dudley, the Council has a target of 95% use of brownfield land for new housing and the Black Country Study proposes a target of 100% use of brownfield land for all new development proposals.
The development of brownfield and contaminated land is subject to a range of the legislative requirements and developers should contact the Council prior to the submission of any proposals on land in the Borough. The Council and its officers have a long history and experience of dealing with a range of issues related to brownfield and contaminated land. Intending developers or landowners should hold informal pre application discussions with the Council to establish the scale of any potential problems and the procedures required.
The Homes and Communities Agency have published "The Brownfield Guide" which advises how brownfield sites may be considered for re-use and highlights the best practice approach adopted by HCA.