Council blocks plans to build ‘eyesore’ towers after backlash from residents

By Joe Coughlan, Local Democracy Reporter

A council has refused plans to build a new pair of tower blocks up to 14-storeys tall after backlash from residents who described the design as an “eyesore”.

Bromley council has refused the plans from Ringers Road Properties Limited to build the towers that would have created nearly 100 new flats in Bromley town centre.

The project included 94 new flats, 35 per cent of which would be “affordable”, across two 14 and 12-storey tall buildings in Ringers Road and Ethelbert Road. 

The plans received 109 objections online from people living in the area, calling the design and height of the project an “eyesore” and “sterile”.

CGI image of the proposed tower blocks on Ringers Road (Picture: Hollaway Studio/Ringers Road Properties)

The plans were discussed at a development control meeting for Bromley council on November 30. 

Council officers recommended the plans be rejected in their report, stating the design and layout of the project was considered excessive. Councillors also expressed concerns about the possibility of overlooking from the flats.

Mark Batchelor, speaking on behalf of Ringers Road Properties Limited, said at the meeting: “The flats have a generous outlook. Again recognising the location, it is in a town centre. 

“You’re not going to have wide reaching views across rolling hills.”

The Development Control Committee meeting for Bromley council (Picture: Joe Coughlan)

The committee also noted the lack of family homes offered in the development, with only one and two-bedroom flats being proposed. 

Labour Councillor, Alisa Igoe, also asked Mr Batchelor about the fire safety provisions in the building, as the London Fire Brigade had raised concerns about the lack of a dedicated lobby for residents waiting for evacuation lifts.

Mr Batchelor said in response that the developer had focused on one and two-bedroom flats due to the nature of the area the site was located in. 

He added that Bromley council’s Local Plan claimed one and two-bedroom flats were in a greater need in the borough overall when compared to other forms of housing. 

Council officers rejected the plans, stating the design and layout was excessive (Picture: Hollaway Studio / Ringers Road Properties)

The representative also said that the design of the building had been updated to comply with the latest fire safety regulations.

Liberal Democrat Councillor, Chloe-Jane Ross, said at the meeting that she felt it was short sighted of the developers not to include homes for young families in the development. 

She said she liked the design at the bottom portion of the buildings, but found the overall height of the project to be too tall and “overbearing”.

The development control committee voted to refuse the plans for the new tower blocks in a 13 to two vote.

Picture: Mark Batchelor, speaking on behalf of Ringers Road Properties Limited, at the Development Control Committee meeting for Bromley council (Picture: Joe Coughlan)

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