Thursday, 8 November 2018

Brent Council hails estate redevelopment ballot of St Raphael's residents

Brent Council has issued the following press release on their plans for the St Raphael's Estate. See article on Wembley Matters HERE

Muhammed Butt is quoted in the PR as saying he is 'committed to putting residents in the driving seat, making decisions about where they live.'   This may ring hollow to residents elsewhere in Brent who have found their voices ignored when they oppose redevelopment they felt detrimental to their neighbourhood.

BRENT COUNCIL'S PRESS RELEASE
Residents on St Raphael’s Estate could be among the first in London to be balloted on proposals to build new homes and community facilities in their neighbourhood.

This is a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity for the community of St Raphael’s Estate, local partners and Brent Council to shape the area for future generations. To kick off the process Brent’s Cabinet will be asked to give the go ahead to a full resident-led master planning process at its meeting on November 12.

The report, which is set to be considered by Cabinet, identifies two options as a starting point to be refined and developed by residents. One option would see the existing buildings refurbished with possibly limited new build on green space. If this is the final preference there would be no requirement for a ballot. The other option is for a comprehensive redevelopment of the whole estate which would be subject to a public vote of people who live there. 

Local people would design the area including the number of new homes, what community facilities are needed and where, and the layout of the roads. This plan would be put to a public vote on the estate, which would make Brent one of the first boroughs to action the Mayor of London’s ballot policy on regeneration.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s new policy requires major estate regeneration schemes to have residents’ backing before they can receive City Hall funding, a policy which Brent fully supports. 

Cllr Muhammed Butt, Leader of Brent Council, said:
 “We are committed to putting residents in the driving seat, making decisions about where they live. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for residents to redesign the estate they love. People have told us they want to live in modern homes in a safe, crime-free neighbourhood. 

“Tackling the housing crisis is a priority for Brent and this is a unique opportunity to build brand new homes that meet the needs of the families who live on St Raph’s. I’m proud that Brent residents could be some of the first to have the chance to participate in a ballot before anything goes ahead.”
James Murray, London’s Deputy Mayor for Housing and Residential Development, said:
 “When estate regeneration is done well, it can improve homes for existing residents and see more social housing built for local people.

“The Mayor wants residents to be confident they will have a real say over the future of their estate when regeneration is planned, so he has put ballots at the heart of his approach for schemes where demolition of existing homes is involved. We very much welcome Brent Council’s clear commitment to giving residents at St Raph’s a vote on their plans and look forward to continuing to work together to build more of the council homes that Londoners so desperately need.”

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