The study, commissioned by Wolverhampton City Council, will assess the city's historic character and local distinctiveness. The findings will be used to outline protection for areas sensitive to change. It will also help the authority resolve conflicting objectives in areas subject to development pressures.
The three AAPs cover almost a fifth of the total city area and will be the primary focus for regeneration over the next 20 years. They will focus on the Stafford Road corridor, which runs northwards from the city centre, the Bilston corridor, which lies to the south-east, and a central zone.
The former industrial land includes canals dating back to the 18th century but is now largely redundant. The authority wants to investigate how to accommodate residential development on the sites. It is working closely with English Heritage as well as the consultancy.
The study is due to be completed in January and will form part of the evidence base in considering development options.