A consortium of developers with interests along the Old Kent Road is funding Southwark Council's delegation to the MIPIM property trade show in Cannes next month.
Two Southwark Council officers – chief executive Eleanor Kelly and Old Kent Road regeneration boss Colin Wilson – will travel to Cannes to promote the borough at the massive MIPIM property trade show in March.
Council leader Peter John is also attending both for Southwark and in his wider role as chair of London Councils, the umbrella group for the capital's boroughs. He is listed as a speaker at two panel discussions.
The council says that the main purpose of its trip to Cannes is to promote the Bakerloo line extension beyond Elephant & Castle via the Old Kent Road, promoting the benefits of the extension for London, and meeting with stakeholders to gain their support.
"It was at MIPIM in 2013 that I secured the support of Boris Johnson, then Mayor of London, for the Bakerloo line extension," said Cllr Peter John.
"Since then support for the project has grown exponentially, but so too have the number of other large and expensive infrastructure projects we are competing with.
"With new homes being planned and developed on the Old Kent Road at pace, this year is a crucial time for the project, and we need to pull out all the stops to secure backing for this essential project.
"The Bakerloo line extension will benefit all of London, and we need to make sure we keep it on everyone's agenda, which is why Southwark has decided to go to MIPIM this year."
The council says that it has obtained sponsorship "which is fully covering the costs" of the Cannes trip.
An email sent to property professionals inviting them to book a meeting with Southwark's MIPIM delegation carries the logos of twelve sponsors:
• 2020 Capital, developers of two sites in the OKR area
• Avanton, owners of several OKR sites including the Ruby Triangle and gasworks
• Berkeley, who have plans for a site on Malt Street
• British Land, the council's Canada Water development partner
• Get Living, the build-to-rent brand which is a partnership between Qatari Diar and clients of Delancey, active at the Elephant & Castle
• Grosvenor, who have just received approval for their Biscuit Factory scheme in SE16
• Hollybrook – Southwark-based developers with several sites in the borough
• Joseph Homes – developers of a tall building in Sylvan Grove off OKR
• London Square – developers of the old Crosse & Blackwell factory in Bermondsey
• Safestore – self-storage firm with an Old Kent Road site
• Shaw Corporation – developers of HSS Hire and BP petrol station on Old Kent Road
• Urban & Provincial – developers of Carpetright site
Cllr Anood Al-Samerai, leader of the council's Liberal Democrat group, said: "I believe that the leader of the council should spend less time on swanky trips with developers and more time listening to residents about how they want to see the borough develop."
Last year Transport for London warned that only 9,000 of the 25,000 new homes planned for the Old Kent Road area can be built unless or until the Bakerloo line extension is in place.
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