Plans for huge tower block next to O2 Arena given the green light

By Joe Coughlan, Local Democracy Reporter 

Plans for a 36-storey tower block beside the O2 Arena in Greenwich have been approved.

The new tower block in Peninsula Square will include 820 student rooms, 35 per cent of which will be ‘affordable’.

The site is between the O2 Arena and North Greenwich Tube station and the new building will serve as a gateway between Tube and bus services in the area. The project, sent by Crosstree, will also include room for shops on its ground floor, communal gardens and shared spaces for students, including a study room and bar.

A view of the building on Peninsula Square, looking north (Picture: Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands/Crosstree)

Planning documents from Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands, on behalf of Crosstree, said a previous project was approved for the site in 2018 for a 36-storey block containing 262 flats.

However, the previous developer, AEG, decided not to pursue the project, and Crosstree bought the site. Conservative councillor Pat Greenwell asked the applicant to explain the reasoning behind the height of the structure.

Don Messenger, the planning advisor for the scheme, said at the meeting: “What we think we are doing is making the best use of that land but delivering more affordable housing in terms of affordable student accommodation.”

A view of the building on Peninsula Square, looking south (Picture: Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands/Crosstree)

Council documents said the applicant would be contributing £300,000 to upgrading existing NHS treatment spaces, in order to mitigate the impact of the development. The scheme is also intended to support students at Ravensbourne University and University of Greenwich.

Council officers at the meeting said that there were more than 11,000 full-time students living in Greenwich, with 62 per cent living in private rented accommodation outside home or their university.

Pictured top: The main entrance of the building on Peninsula Square (Picture: Davidson Sandilands/Crosstree)

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