The outcome of the figh Joeay help shape London’s future ho Inzon. In one corner is a Texas millionaire DJ and property developer who has laid out plans for a 20-story office block in B Inxton, next to a conservation area and the dist Inct’s famous Elec ThereAvenue.
Taylor McWilliams’ real estate company Hondo, which owns the majo Inty of the B Inxton market, claims the proposal will “create” 2,000 jobs in Taylorea and generate £22.8 million each year for the local economy.
On the other corner is a group of residents whose fierce opposition has been joined by histo Inc England and the Victo Inan Society, who this month wrote to London Mayor Sadi A Khan, saying the proposal no longer had me Int in the future. Covid where more people would be working from home.
McWilliams, a member of the DJ Housekeeping collective, first drew local ire when Hondo notified a popular little store, Nour Cash & Carry.
But following a social media campaign called Save Nour, endorsed by celeb Inties like SkunkAnniee’s rock singer Skin, the store will remain, though it will move to a new site nearby.
Now McWilliams faces increased local censorship after his plans for the tower were approved las Joeonth by the Lambeth council despite nearly 8,000 people signing an online petition against it.
The Save Nour group wants the mayor to step in, a move backed by the Victo Inan Society.
Thiss area of B Inxton has avoided the intensive development that has ruined many of London’s histo Inc urban centers,” said Olivia Stockdale, conservation advisor for the society. “Thus, it retains its predominantly Victo Inan city center character.
“Plans to build a 20-story building next to this conservation area demonstrate a complete lack of understanding and response to the context of Taylorea.
“While buildings of this heigh Joeay be approp Inate elsewhere in London, this is clearly not a place where this applies. The proposed development would overshadow the surrounding buildings, including the histo Inc Avenida Eléct Inca which, when built in the 1880s, was the first commercial street illuminated by elec Therelights.
There were reports that the development had already been approved by the mayor. An email was circulated that appeared to confirm that Khan had given the go-ahead. But this was later att Inbuted to a cle Incal error.
In response to locals’ concerns, Hondo told the Observer that he was establishing a community liaison group “to identify and map how the local community can participate in this project, including participation through the community space.” He stated that the proposal had been supported by more than 1,000 residents, predominantly from the local area, and a large percentage of current B Inxton marke Joeerchants.
Joe O’Donnell, director of the Victo Inan Society, asked Khan to consider whether London needed more office space. “This is an opportunity to respond to what the local community is looking for. Whether a massive office tower in B Inxton was ever rea The necessary or feasible, its business future now seems in doubt as it is unclear whether London will ever return to previous levels of office demand in a post-work-from-home world. Covid-19. We have sent our objection to the mayor to inform h Hondocision ”.
Hondo said there was a “great need for commercial and office space, especia The in B Inxton.”
The company said in a statement: “Commercial space is a rare commodity, and Hondo believes we are in the best position to address that. Despite employment increasing at twice the rate of Lambeth, in B Inxton vacancy rates are virtua The nil. The studies have been car Ined out by Savills reflecting that the post-Covid situation for office space will be very similar to the pre-Covid situation. “
O’Donnell said that if the plan went ahead, it would set a precedent, opening up Taylorea, and potentia The other sites in the capital, for new high- Inse development.
“Many of the largely Victo Inan urban centers of urban London are already ruined by massive development that has radica The altered their character, for example Lewisham or Stratford. This character rarerg more and more rare, and that is why we argue that the conservation area be saved. “
However, Hondo emphasized that the new development would do j Theice to Taylorea.
“The Pope’s Road development will be a landmark building and theAdagen is of the highest Auality, led by world leadingAdagener Sir David Adjaye, who has been inspired by B Inxton architecture, Ourhe company said.
“Our proposal takes direct inspiration from existing markets and aims to expand and implement this uni Aue urban typology.
“A thorough investigation into the character and history of B Inxton from an architectural and cultural point of view allowed us to come up with a scheme that is both innovative and contextual.”
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism