Can't see that anyone else has posted this, but apologies if it is a repeat: The overview and Scrutiny Committee, which will decide whether the Southwark Council Cabinet's decision to adopt the Blackfriars Road SPD should be reversed, will meet on:
I live at Quadrant House, and will be attending this meeting, so thanks for posting the details.
Many of the residents are shocked and distressed by what is being planned by Southwark Council. Quadrant House is our HOME and we feel we are being pushed out by greedy developers keen to build what they are calling "high end" property in a "high quality public realm" From what I can see out of my window much of this new "high end" property lies empty, for example Neo Bankside, so I suggest that this development is speculative and all about making money. All of the political parties talk about affordable housing,and mixed developments so I am left wondering how Southwark Labour led council can be doing this. Even their own Shadow Communities Secretary Hilary Benn said "Labour would give communities more say over planning"(Guardian June 2013)
It would be interesting to get a sense of other forum members' views of this initiative. First thoughts here are:
1. Yes, many premises were previously being run into the ground or under-occupied. Al though the horse has bolted, arguably the 'stable door' of community reinvestment could have been put to good use during the slow period of the road's progressive 'decline'.
2. The notion of an extension of the City south of the river is, at best, a very mixed blessing for local residents, given that if we look at relatively recent developments of not-entirely-dissimilar profile, namely, Canary Wharf, such benefits as accrue do not 'trickle down' to local residents.
For example, what proportion of locals will find work other than non-skilled manual activity in what is likely to be an economic landscape dominated by the overspill of the financial services industry?
The extension of 'the City' southwards is by no means widely supported. The City of London and City of Westminster, and UNESCO, view the proliferation of huge towers along the South Bank with concern and opposition on heritage grounds and plenty else.
The Shard has a low amount of office space (much of which is going to TfL - not exactly a blue chip corporate let) - it can be contrasted with much shorter buildings in the City that have less impacts on strategic views. Westminster are taking Lambeth to court over some of their recent approvals for example, and the Potters Fields scheme had to be redesigned for similar reasons.
Maybe worth joining with amenity/heritage groups north of the river!
This isn't really an extension of the City, as there tends to be a different occupier base on the Southbank (media, professional services, architecture/designers) compared to the City (financial services and insurance). The council is proposing some office-led schemes, which helps create a community instead of solely residential (which would actually raise more cash for the council, so not "greed driven")
When you've got the opportunity to use the strong capital inflows that happen to be coming into London at present to rebuild a largely neglected but very well situated part of London, I say take it! Those who are against the plans appear to be acting out of self interest, given that newly constructed spaces and money raised from developers will benefit the majority of the community and will allow the council to provide assistance for a far greater number of people.
The Shard isn't anywhere near Blackfriars Road, so not sure why this was mentioned, but the info provided is all backwards anyway: 50% of the tower is office - a not insignificant 600k sqft, it was intended to be a mixed use building (with residential, hotel, office, and retail space, and now a hospital!), and TFL are not taking any space at all.
quite correct sjac TfL pulled out of the Shard years ago...the plans for the Blackfriars road development look interesting and considering its proximity to the City and West End it is rather a wasteland at the moment. Surely this redevelopment is good for the area?
I don't think many disagree that some redevelopment is good for the area. What many don't agree with is how the people who already live here are not being listened to.
It can easily be dismissed as local NIMBYism, but I do think there is just general concern on how the area is going to change, how the infrastructure will cope, and whether we are eventually all going to be forced to leave the area we love.
That's fair enough, nelson, so long as people are honest about it (as you were). As areas become more desireable and more expensive, some people are going to be forced to leave (both private and council). The upside is that the cash raised through s106 agreements, land sales, and additional taxes will allow many more people who are on the list for more affordable housing to be housed. Unfortunately, the oft-requested "build more council housing in the prime areas" would require that significantly less council housing is built in general and further widens the divide between the "haves" and "have-nots" (and in this situation, those that are living in good council housing in the prime areas of SE1 are most definitely "haves".)