A recent blogger reflected :

“. . . planners and local authorities seem to see themselves (already, let alone under the government’s planning reforms) as entirely beholden to corporate development. Same with Beorma’s might against BVSC and our lovely local Polish shop on Allison Street.” 

Andy Foster placed a link on the ReStirred Forum to the thoughts of Joe Holyoak [architecture, urban design, urban regeneration, conservation and community participation] on this subject.

In a letter published yesterday on the Post website, he points out that compulsory purchase is only justified only when carried out in the public interest – not that of private commercial developers. Unfortunately the local authority will argue that in enabling a development offering employment opportunities the CPO will serve the public interest.

Holyoak deplores the city council’s promotion of large-scale redevelopment at the expense of economic diversity and local enterprise, citing the 2006 CPO nearby in Eastside, which destroyed local businesses, leaving swathes of derelict land.

His recommendation: 

On the edge of the Bull Ring in the Digbeth conservation area, where the scale of the city’s medieval pattern is still legible, the city council could promote a viable development of retail, business and residential uses, including existing occupants such as BVSC and the Polish shop in Allison Street.

Read the whole letter including an examination of the ‘barrier’ issue: http://www.birminghampost.net/comment/letters-to-the-editor/2011/05/06/compulsory-purchase-for-development-is-unjustified-65233-28640430/#ixzz1Lh56cDBN