|Queen's Parade now|
|Proposed new student accommodation building|
|New building in townscape|
Planning Officers recommend granting of planning permission for 1-12 Queens Parade, Walm Lane, for demolition of the existing one storey shopping parade and its replacement by a part 6, 7 and 8 storey building housing 117 student accommodation units with 5 retail units on the ground floor and a basement retail warehouse space.
The shops are currently let on a 'meanwhile' basis pending redevelopment.
The officers' report LINK states:
The key planning issues for Members to consider are set out below. Members will need to balance all of the planning issues and the objectives of relevant planning policies when making a decision on the application:
Principle of use: There is no objection in principle to the redevelopment of the site to provide student accommodation and five retail units. The site is considered to accord with Council policy in relation to the provision of student accommodation due to its location within a town centre and good transport links. The submission demonstrates a need for the student accommodation in line with Brent and London Plan policy. The retail units would contribute to the viability and vitality of the Willesden Town Centre. The principle of development is therefore considered to be acceptable.
Representations received: Objections were received from 20 local residents and one Councillor raising concerns regarding the loss of the retail units; harm to the high street; suitability of student accommodation at the site; parking/servicing, overdevelopment; impact on conservation the area and impact on neighbouring amenity. In addition to this 50 letters of support were received from local residents who stated that the existing buildings do not make best use of the site; the proposal will boost the local economy; the new units will improve the town centre; and the height is considered to be suitable.
Demolition of existing building: There is no objection in principle to the demolition of the existing retail units. While they are in a Conservation Area, the existing buildings do not share the distinctive characteristics which define the Willesden Green Conservation Area. The Site Specific Allocation encourages redevelopment of the site with a more intensive and better use of land. The loss of these buildings is considered to accord with policy provided the replacement building is of an acceptable design.
Character and Appearance: The proposal is considered to have a high quality design that has regard to the character of its surroundings including the conservation area and to not inappropriately challenge or dominate surrounding development.
Impact on Neighbouring Amenity: The development has been assessed against loss of light and sense of enclosure on all neighbouring properties. It has been found that the relationship between the proposed development and all surrounding properties is considered to be acceptable, according with relevant Brent standards and BRE guidance.
Parking & Servicing: It is considered that the use of a ‘permit free’ agreement secured by condition would mitigate against parking concerns in the area. It is considered that the proposed servicing arrangements would be suitable for the site and would not materially harm the surrounding area.