The Meriden Gap is a mostly rural area located in the West Midlands between Solihull and Coventry. It serves as a green belt which separates the latter from the large West Midlands conurbation, which includes Birmingham and Wolverhampton. The 'Gap' takes its name from the village central to the area, Meriden, although the largest settlement is the small town of Balsall Common. The majority of the gap falls within the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull with a small amount falling within Warwickshire and some of the northern part being in the Metropolitan Borough of Coventry.
The gap is largely covered by the Meriden parliamentary constituency.
The area is under pressure from housing and business developments in the surrounding urban areas.
The planned expansion of Birmingham International Airport outlines the need for construction upon the greenbelt to allow the expansion to happen. Despite opposition to the expansion plans, the proposal was granted approval. There has been a long running public Inquiry into the need for a motorway service area between J3a and J7 on the M42 motorway which is expected to conclude in the summer of 2008. The Government has called in the West Midlands Regional Spatial Strategy Phase Two Revision as it does not believe that this will provide sufficient housing to meet predicted demands, which may also lead to additional housing being built on green belt.
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