Mass objections raised to ‘out-of-character monstrosity’ at Streatham Vale

By Robert Firth, Local Democracy Reporter

Plans to put a 14-storey tower in an area with a more suburban than inner-city feel, have taken a step forward despite more than 1,000 people objecting to the proposals.

Planners from Lambeth council have recommended councillors approve the 237-home scheme on a site currently occupied by a Homebase store in Woodgate Drive, Streatham.

But residents have branded the proposed development ‘monstrous’ and written to Lambeth councillors asking them to reject the proposals when they go before a planning committee this week.

Their letter says: “The proposal to build 237 homes with a gigantic 14-storey tower in the middle of low rise, suburban Streatham Vale sets a dangerous precedent for councils pushing through overdevelopment in areas simply not suited for or able to cope with the additional stresses such schemes impose on local infrastructure and amenities.

CGI of the planned development (Picture: Lambeth council)

“Indeed the site has been developed to such density that it imposes constraints of the type one might find in an inner city area where space is at a premium.”

The letter goes on to criticise the development for including single aspect flats (where windows are only on one side of the property). Of the 237 homes planned, 31 will be single aspect.

It also raises concerns about noise pollution from a nearby railway line, criticises the placement of some children’s play areas on the roof of buildings and questions the lack of parking spaces included in the development.

According to council planning documents, play space for under-fives would be built on the rooftops of two of the planned buildings, one eight-storeys high and the other seven-storeys tall.

Despite having effectively no parking spaces, planning documents say the development is expected to have a ‘negligible’ impact on local bus routes and trains from Streatham Common station.

But the council report warns that the lack of on-street controlled parking in the area will likely mean the planned flats cause ‘a very high level of local parking stress’.

More objectors opposed to a Woodgate Tower (Picture: Woodgate Tower protest group)

The proposals include 52 social rent homes and 29 shared ownership properties. A GP surgery is expected to move into a unit included in the development.

The plans are being brought forward by developer Hadley Property Group, alongside housing association Clarion Housing Group, who have been contacted for comment.

Emily Smith, co-leader of a residents’ group opposed to the plans, said: “This prison-like development has more in common with Azkaban than Streatham. This area has no other high-rise developments. It’s dominated by late Victorian housing no more than three-storeys high so this block of flats is completely out of character.

“It will block light from surrounding properties and create a horrible environment for both its new residents and those already living in the area.”

More than 1,000 people have signed a petition created by campaigners demanding that Hadley Property Group reduces the height and density of the development.

Pictured top: Residents vehemently opposed to the scheme gathered at the Homebase store (Picture: Robert Firth/LDRS)


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