The West Midlands Interchange proposal constitutes a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (a NSIP). As such it is considered under the Planning Act 2008 rather than the normal town and country planning route. Under the 2008 Act applicants apply for a Development Consent Order (DCO) from the Secretary of State – in this case from the Secretary of State for Transport.
We are now in the process of finalising our DCO application with the intention of submitting it to the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) as soon as possible. There follows an acceptance process over 28 days after which PINS will issue a timetable for a detailed examination of the proposals in which the public can participate. This examination will take up to 6 months. The Planning Inspectorate then has 3 months to make a recommendation to the Secretary of State, who then has a further 3 months to make a decision.
More details on the planning process for national infrastructure can be found on the Planning Inspectorate website.