Posts filed under ‘Putney’

Tileman scheme rejected: too high

Author: Cyril Richert

Following the recommendation of the planning officer on the planning proposal for Tileman House in Putney, the council has refused permission in its meeting yesterday.

Planning applications chairman Leslie McDonnell said:

At fifteen storeys the main block would be higher than any other development in the area. The proposed scheme would also sit uncomfortably alongside the existing buildings in Upper Richmond Road.

“The committee accepted the principle of development at this location. The existing buildings are unattractive, offering outdated office accommodation and contributing little to the street scene.

“However if a scheme is to work here it needs to better reflect the heights of the existing buildings in this part of Putney.

We welcome the decision which comes as a volte-face from previous point of view expressed by the 3 councillors of the area.

More information on the Council’s website.

UPDATE 24 Aug. 2009:
We received some feedback from John Horrocks (Putney Society) who attended the meeting:

Unusually, Councillor Edward Lister came to the meeting to tell the Committee about his concerns regarding a building of this height on this site. As one would have expected, this meant that none of the majority group expressed a contrary view. Or the minority group, either!

The modest ‘debate’ on the application was enlivened by an interesting exchange between Councillor Belton and Councillor Lister on the issue of the council’s Core Strategy policy on tall buildings and whether this is being applied appropriately across different parts of the borough. The application of the policy by the council does raise some interesting questions. The council’s tall buildings policy does seem rather flakey at the moment. Perhaps it will improve as time passes?!

August 21, 2009 at 5:31 pm

Tileman House: Town planner recommends refusal.

Author: Cyril Richert

The officers’ response to the application on Tileman House, Upper Richmond Road has now been made public.   The application is on next week’s agenda and has been recommended for refusal.  There are two reasons for refusal which are:

  1. The proposal by reason of its height and scale would form an overbearing and unduly dominant feature uncharacteristic of the surrounding area and prevailing buildings heights, would have a detrimental impact on the streetscape, and would have an inappropriate relationship with adjoining properties contrary to UDP Policies GEN7, TBE1 and TBE5, Core Strategy Proposed Submission Policies PL4, PL14 and IS3 and London Plan policy 4B.10.
  2. The local planning authority has received inadequate housing viability information in order to assess if the proposed level of affordable housing in terms of the overall numbers, the mix of types and sizes and the split between social rented and intermediate has been maximised on this site in order to secure the Council’s affordable housing target. The proposal is therefore contrary to Core Strategy: submission version policy IS 5 and London Plan Policies 3A.9 and 3A.10.

It remains to be seen whether the members of the Committee do or do not agree with the recommendations, but I think we can guess that the weight of public opinion has had some effect: On the Council’s website, there are currently 269 objections and …2 support letters! According to the planning officer report, we had 267 objections on the previous application withdrawn last year.

The Mayor of London raised also serious concerns about the height of the 15 storey element of the proposal.

More information on the Tileman redevelopment in our previous articles:

  1. Tileman House – Upper Richmond House
  2. Tileman House – Comments

August 14, 2009 at 3:09 pm

Tileman House – Comments

Author: Cyril Richert

We have reported in a separate article about the planning application submitted to the Council to redevelop the site of Tileman House.

Three Councillors (Ravi Govindia, Jeremy Larsson and Leslie McDonnell, also chair of the Planning Committee, from East Putney ward) have published a letter (see here/bottom) addressed to residents of the vicinity of Upper Richmond Road where they encourage present favourably the case for the development:

The alternative would be for the property to remain empty for a long period of time running the risk of it becoming an eyesore. […] proposals for a mixed commercial/residential development should have the advantage of bringing the buildings into use and adding to the attraction of Putney Town centre as a destination. […] Any redevelopments on the Upper Richmond Road will attract s106 gains which will be used to improve the infrastructure in the immediate area. It is important that as Wandsworth Town Centre develops further, Putney does not lose out.

However, the application has generally created a massive opposition.

There is already an animated debate with more than 90 messages (since mid-June, as of today) on the PutneySW15.com website. As written in the first post, most of the comments “fail to see how the minor alterations made to the plans address the concerns expressed in the hundreds of comments sent against the last application“.

On the Council website, the latest count on the revised application is 179 objections and 3 in favour (as of 17/07). A lot of the objections are repeating the words “insulting our intelligence” and ” I do not want“. In addition, as confirmed by the Chairman of the Planning Committee, hundreds of comments on the previous application (ref 2008/5428) will be reported to the planning committee.

John Horrocks, for the Putney Society, said:

To the general public, given that their concern, when looking at this application, is what the proposed building would look like from the Upper Richmond Road, this new application is no different from last year’s application (No 2008/5428). In this context, the two applications are identical.

The Society’s objections to last year’s application were set out in our letter of 23 February 2009.  The Society has since produced a Design Brief (dated June 2009) which details how this site should be redeveloped if a satisfactory building is to be achieved. […]

On all these points the application is in conflict with the council’s planning standards and policies as set out in the various planning policy documents which now make up the ‘development plan’.  We see no reason why a departure from these policies would be appropriate here.  There would be no advantage to Putney in doing so.

Justine Greening, Conservative MP for Putney said:

I am writing to object to the latest planning application for Tileman House.

I remain concerned about the height of the proposed building, especially of the rear block. Additionally, the properties in St John’s Avenue will be overlooked by a number of balconies at the rear of Tileman House in a way that they are not currently and this will clearly be an intrusion for those residents. […]

I request that my constituents’ concerns are fully taken into account during the planning process and I would be grateful if you could continue to keep me informed of progress on this application.

Labour’s prospective parliamentary candidate Stuart King said:

The conduct of the developer in this case is deeply cynical. The tactics of withdrawal, inconsequential amendment and resubmission are nothing more than a war of attrition with local residents, who remain overwhelmingly against this overdevelopment. It is time-consuming for everyone concerned and deeply undemocratic. I pay tribute to the civic contribution those who feel so passionately against this overdevelopment continue to show.

Residents and I support regeneration of Upper Richmond Road and this site in particular. But that regeneration cannot be at any price and certainly not at the price that entails a 15-storey tower on the site’s Upper Richmond Road frontage. The reduction in bulk to the rear offers a negligible positive improvement on light and overlooking to residents of St John’s Avenue, and the further reduction in what was already an unacceptably low proportion of affordable housing is equally intolerable given Putney’s shortage of affordable homes.

This application is likely to come before the Planning Applications Committee on 20th August.

If you want to let the Council know your view, contacts details are available HERE with reference to Planning Application No 2009/1773.

July 17, 2009 at 6:59 pm

Tileman House – Upper Richmond House

Author: Cyril Richert

Tileman House - locationThe Council has published the documents for the redevelopment of the site called Tileman House involving demolition of existing buildings on site and erection of building of between eight and fifteen storeys to provide 89 flats (22 affordable), roof terraces and balconies together with 807sq.m. ground floor commercial floorspace (flexible use for A1 (shops)/A2 (financial and professional services)/A3 (cafe/restaurant use)/A4 (drinking establishments) or D1 (non-residential institutions); 1600sq.m. office floorspace (Class B1); basement car park of 73 spaces (plus 2 at surface level for car club).

This is an alterations to the previous application (ref: 2008/5428) to include; reduction in height of rear block by 2 storeys, loss of 10 residential units (including loss of 3 affordable units), reduction to the rear building line of the east block.

Tileman drawing

Tileman: comparison with existing building

More information (including comparison with the previous application) is provided by the developers in their documentation (download here) or directly on the Council’s website.

This application is likely to come before the Planning Applications Committee on 20th August.

If you want to let the Council know your view, contacts details are available HERE with reference to Planning Application No 2009/1773.

July 17, 2009 at 5:26 pm 2 comments


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