Dudley’s eyesore Cavendish House building will finally be demolished early next year - after funding was granted in principle to send the bulldozers in.
The Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) board approved a proposal to award more than £600,000 at a meeting this week to allow work to start on site in the New Year.
It needs to be rubber-stamped by the Black Country Executive Joint Committee when it meets in January but that is expected to be a formality.
Dudley Council bosses are now looking to press ahead quickly to clear the way for ambitious plans for the long derelict site.
The demolition is expected to happen in the early part of 2019 and has been dubbed an “early Christmas present” for borough residents by council leader Qadar Zada.
The cash - £664,725 in total – will fund the complete first phase of the Portersfield Development Scheme to cover the demolition of Cavendish House as well as flattening the former B&Q and disused scout hut buildings nearby.
It will kick-start an £82 million transformation of the site which will see new shops, apartments, bars, restaurants, a health club and a cinema and hundreds of jobs created.
Councillor Qadar Zada, leader of the council, said:
This is absolutely fantastic news that I am sure will be welcomed by everyone who lives in the borough.
It is a real early Christmas present for our residents.
Cavendish House has long been an eyesore, a blot on the landscape.
Now we have managed to secure an agreement in principle we will look to push on as quickly as possible to make sure it is demolished.
The plans for the site are really exciting and we want to make them a reality as soon as possible.”
When complete, Portersfield will link in with the proposed new bus station and connect with the planned £343 million Midland Metro extension through the town.