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The battle to find out which high rise will be the largest, most unpopular, and least wanted by the community is on. 18 storeys are planned on the old arcade site, along with the 15 and 23 storey flats planned for Blackhorse Road.

In response local campaigners have set up a website Fighttheheight.co.uk to try and pressure the council to retreat from their mission to build them high, pack them in, and whatever you do, don’t ever include community facilities!

The site spotlights the much heralded Prince’s Foundation report on the redevelopment of Walthamstow, and how it specifically stated that housing development should be “compatible with Walthamstow’s Victorian terraced houses“.

In an interview with Property Week, Prince Charles & the chief executive of his Foundation, Hank Dittmar talk how high rise housing is inappropriate in an area such as Walthamstow.

They recommended a maximum height of 8 storeys for Walthamstow Town Centre, and neatly summed up the views of the community as: “If you ask Londoners about tower blocks, you find that they are only liked by investors in property“.

Read the interview with Prince Charles in Property Week (scroll towards the end for Walthamstow).
Visit Fighttheheight.co.uk for more on the opposition to high rises in Walthamstow.
The Walthamstow Town Centre Consultation website
Send the developers your views on the 15 & 23 Storey block’s of flats planned at Blackhorse Road.

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The exhibition of plans for the Blackhorse area may be over but there’s still time to let the developers know your views. Visit their website to enter feedback and also join the debate here by adding a comment.

Many residents have expressed horror at the high rise plans which include a 23 storey block of flats that the developers themselves boast can be seen from Tottenham Hale“.

Most agree that the site needs redevelopment, but question how a 23 storey building can possibly be inkeeping with an area with no other buildings over 4/5 stories, not to mention on the doorstep of a Ramsar-listed nature reserve, canals, and the SSSI Walthamstow Marshes!

There are also major concerns that all traffic from the site comes out straight onto Edward/Hawarden Road (see plan here).

Resident Helen points out that the development offers nothing to the local community in the way of mixed use or community facilities and is a council led attempt to cram as many living spaces into a small area as possible:

418 units are proposed ie very high density – no community facilites or mixed use – one way sytem proposed all traffic for the site will enter via Blackhorse Rd and exit at corner of Hawarden and Edward Rd therefore this proposal will definitely impact on traffic/ noise / pollution on all of Edward Rd. I found them quite reasonable – it is clear that they are working to a specfic brief from Waltham Forest as to how many units must be fitted in to this site. More evidence of this council’s subterfuge and dirty dealings since for the best part of a year Waltham Forest refused to answer my specific questions raised at the Walthamstow West Community Council about the amount of units planned for this site on the grounds that they hadn’t had a planning application“.

Diana, another visitor to the exhibtion pointed out that the “trend country-wide is to move away from the concept of high-rise residential blocks“.

WILLOWFIELD SCHOOL

The developers have not been consulted on the councils renewed plans for the school on Douglas Ayre Playing Fields. They stated that their plans allowed no access to a school through the development. They also questioned the feasability of a school on a 3A Flood risk site (High Probability).

Resident Helen again writes:
They have not been informed that school is being considered again for Douglas Eyre. I spoke at length about this issue to more than one rep from the stakeholders and they were of the opinion the Council would not get the go ahead because the Environment Agency would block it. A huge school will obviously affect the prices they can get for their units as it will mean hordes of students walking through their estate. and of course more traffic. They are not at all in favour of the school proposal. This is the second attempt by Waltham Forest to sneak through this proposal without giving proper consideration to alternative sites which would cost more money“.

Please give your feedback and opinions to the developers on their website, which should contain more examples of the plans. Also join the debate here by adding your comments.

Want to know what the developers have in mind for Blackhorse Road?

The “revised” plans for the redevelopment are going on public display for three days only.

If you have objections, opinions, or even just fancy a nose, this is your chance. Decisions on every aspect of Blackhorse Road’s future are being taken, from the number of storeys flats might have right through to access to reservoirs and green spaces.

Thursday 28 February from 6pm to 8.30pm
Friday 29 February from 6pm to 8.30pm
Saturday 1 March from 10am to 2 pm

Venue:
Stoneydown Park Primary School
Pretoria Avenue, Walthamstow E17 6JY – MAP here

Should you miss the public display, you can also submit your views to the Blackhorse Road developers website.

On their website the KLA invite all residents to come along and give feedback on the plans. The only slight snag being – as of today – the website doesn’t actually give any address for the exhibition! Also has anyone received any information through the post that might actually inform residents its on?

All of which brings to mind Douglas Adams on public planning displays:

“But the plans were on display …”
“On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them.”
“That’s the display department.”
“With a flashlight.”
“Ah, well the lights had probably gone.”
“So had the stairs.”

(UPDATE: One day before the exhibition and an address has now appeared).

Submit your views on climate change to the council via this link and they’ll send you a low energy bulb. You could even win a prize!

The deadline is this Friday, the 15th Feb.

Here’s hoping you all had a fantastic Christmas – great food, company and, who knows, even useful presents!
If you didn’t have the opportunity to go to the exhibition and comment on the plans developers are proposing for BHL2, you can still do it by sending your views by e-mail, fax or post to Harry Hudson. Please submit your comments by the 4th of January.

Harry Hudson
Green Issues Communications Ltd
Freepost NAT22750
Reading
RG1 4BR
e-mail: harryh@greenissues.com
fax: 0118 959 8244

Reminder: this is about the proposed housing (see plans here) and not the school. We’ll let you know more on that score as we find things out.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Green Issues, the agents of the developers, are holding a three day exhibition of their plans for the proposed development of housing on BHL2. Anybody with an interest on what gets put up on that land should go a long and take a look, and feed their views into the process.

 

They’re spreading the exhibition over three days, so as to give people as much chance as possible to attend. Which is nice. Here are details:

Venue: Stoneydown Park Primary School, Pretoria Avenue,

Walthamstow E17 6JY

Dates: Thursday 13 December from 6 to 8.30pm

Friday 14 December from 6 to 8.30pm; and

Saturday 15 December from 10am to 2 pm.

 

It’s worth casting your eye over Green Issues’ detailed account of their recollection of the meeting with us: click here.

You can also look back over the last thing posted here on this subject: click here.

Just a note to let people know that the consultation meeting at Douglas Eyre pavilion will NOT be next week, as was announced at the residents meeting, but on the evening of the 27th. I’ll confirm the time here when I have heard back from Cllr O’Rourke.

The meeting will be about the High Street development, and Cllr O’Rourke has arranged for the bar to be open!

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