MP calls on Mayor of London to block waterfront development

Vauxhall MP Florence Eshalomi (Lab) has called on London Mayor Sadiq Khan to block a development approved by Lambeth LBC.

Known as Slab, or 72 Upper Ground, the development is a cluster of skyscrapers that will serve as office buildings. It is expected to be held at the current location of ITV’s former headquarters.

Lambeth LBC planners have sent the development proposal to Greater London Assembly, and Mr Khan now has two weeks to make a decision on whether it will go ahead.

The council voted in favor of the development in March, with a majority vote of 6:1. It is hoped the development will create up to 4,500 jobs in the borough when completed.

However, residents and local community groups in and around Waterloo oppose the development as they believe it will spoil the view of the River Thames. They ask Mr. Khan to stop him from going through the GLA.

Ms Eshalomi also made a formal objection to the upgrade secretary, Greg Clark, on the development plans.

In a letter to Ben Oates, the main planning officer in Lambeth, Ms Eshalomi wrote: “Many residents of the local community have contacted me with their concerns about this proposal, I share their reservations.

Ms Eshalomi wrote that she agrees the site in question needs to be developed and praised the sustainability aspects of the proposal, the jobs it would facilitate and the funds it would generate in developer contributions to improving the public domain and transport accessibility.

“However, I am not convinced that the type of development proposed is aligned with the needs of the region, and I believe that the above benefits could be provided while avoiding the bulk of the damage that this proposal would cause to local properties. and heritage assets,” she said.

Its objection to the proposal is based on three specific grounds, including the lack of housing in the development, the affordability of office space included in the development, the reduction in daylight for properties on the south side of the development and the harm that ‘it can cause to several cultural sites. assets close to the development.

She said: “I don’t think these plans are benefiting the local community enough and the impact of the proposed development could make the South Bank less attractive as one of London’s main cultural assets. I urge policy makers to reconsider this.

Michael Ball, a member of the Waterloo Community Development Group, said: ‘As Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan bravely stopped the Garden Bridge.

‘He must act again now to protect London’s South Bank from another ill-conceived plan, which will overwhelm and eclipse London’s most popular space,’ Mr Ball said.

An anti-development petition launched by the Waterloo Community Development Group has already garnered more than 3,000 signatures.

A Lambeth Council spokesman said: ‘The proposals for this important South Bank site have been approved by Lambeth Council’s Planning Applications Committee on the basis that it is a sustainable development which would provide significant opportunities for people living in the borough.

“The proposals support our wider goals of tackling poverty and inequality in Lambeth by creating new jobs, skills and training opportunities as well as affordable workspaces so that everyone in our borough has a chance to thrive.

“The proposed repurposing of cultural uses would integrate well with commercial spaces and continue to support the cultural significance of the South Shore.

“There would also be additional open green spaces that the general public could use. In total, 40% of the site would be open to the public, with two new public places and new public passages.

“Council carefully considered all issues relating to this proposal, including those raised by the community and other stakeholders, before deciding whether to grant planning permission for this central London site. This included an assessment of the impact of the proposal on strategic and local perspectives.

“The application is now with the Greater London Authority for consideration.”

The 72 Upper Ground project plans to build a 25-storey office building connected to two 14- and 6-storey buildings and create affordable workspace for the creative industries.

A spokesperson for 72 Upper Ground said: “Our proposals to transform an inactive, gated site in central London into a new mixed-use development that prioritises high-quality workspace and the provision of new arts and cultural will be a great addition to the south shore.

“Recommended for approval by planning officers and Lambeth Council, 72 Upper Ground will bring investment, over 4,000 new jobs and new workspace to one of London’s most famous destinations. Crucially, this will benefit the local community through London Studios, which will provide 40,000 square feet of affordable space tailored to the needs of Lambeth’s emerging creative industries. This includes new cultural venues with rehearsal spaces, galleries and presentation spaces, soundproof screening rooms and studios, and new riverside cafes and restaurants.