Wednesday, 9 December 2020

UPDATE: First phase of Northwick Park development at planning tonight - it may be another marathon


Overall view of the context of the site that will be developed (outlined in red)

The site now (slightly right of centre)

Masterplan view of the whole site as it will be - this application in foreground left



The first major section of the Northwick Park development comes up at tonight's Planning Committee. If the last meeting was a marathon tonight's may necessitate committee members and officers bringing in their sleeping bags!

The overall Northwick Park master plan is a development shared between partners Brent Council, University of Westminsters, Northwick Park Hospital (NHS) and Network Housing as part of the One Public Estate government sponsored initiative.

This particular site will be familiar with visitors to the hospital who approach from Northwick Park station. They will know the chimney of the energy unit, low buildings, the hospital social club, nursery and some housing on the left side of the ring road as you approach along the footpath.

All will be swept away eventually and replaced with tower blocks ranging from 5-6 storeys to 12-13 storeys, a new nursery building and some small shops. The social club appears unlikely to survive unless space is found on the hospital site and in any case the hospital is said to want to discourage the consumption of alcohol - pity the poor hospital works after an intensive shift!

The Planning Committee will be told that there were just 10 objectors to the scheme and the officers' report dismisses each of them in turn. See LINK.


The proposal:

Full planning permission for demolition of existing buildings and structures on the site, all site preparation works for a residential led mixed-use developmentcomprising 654 new homes, associated car and cycle spaces, a replacement nursery, retail space, associated highways improvements, open space, hard andsoft landscaping and public realm works.

 With Cllr Maurice on the committee you can bet parking will take up a lot of  the time and here it is not just a matter of parking for the new residents but also parking for hospital workers themselves. The tenure of the housing will also be an issue with another Brent development with a significant amount of shared ownership despite recent publicity over drawbacks to such schemes:

Out of the 654 units, 409 will be private -

Affordable housing: Provision of 245 affordable units comprising: 

a. 70 units for affordable rent at London Affordable Rent levels and 26 units for affordable rentat London Living Rent levels, in accordance with the Mayor of London's Affordable HousingProgramme 2016-2021 Funding Guidance (dated November 2016) or the necessaryguidance as it is updated and subject to an appropriate Affordable Rent nominationsagreement with the Council, securing 100% nomination rights on first lets and 75%nomination rights on subsequent lets for the Council.

b. 38 units for affordable rent at rent levels not exceeding 80% of current market rents, andsubject to an appropriate Affordable Rent nominations agreement with the NHS Trust and the Council, securing 100% nomination rights on first lets and 75% nomination rights onsubsequent lets for the NHS Trust and cascaded rights for the Council. 

c. 111 units for Shared Ownership, (as defined under section 70(6) of the Housing &Regeneration Act 2008, subject to London Plan policy affordability stipulations that total housing costs should not exceed 40% of net annual household income, disposed on a freehold / minimum 125 year leasehold to a Registered Provider, (and subject to anappropriate Shared Ownership nominations agreement with the Council that secure sreasonable local priority to the units). The condition in brackets has been removed in a supplementary report. 

Concerns over the environmental impact of the scheme, impingement on Metropolitan Open Space, housing tenure, the proportion of amenity space, over-shadowing, the impact on views (especially from Harrow-on-the-Hill) are all, as usual, judged on balance to be tolerable given the 'benefits of the scheme.'

Officers judged that capacity in local primary and secondary schools is sufficient to cater for the increased population.

The webcast of the meeting starts at 6pm tonight:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Look like another massive overdevelopment!!!