I've just got back from a public meeting that I organised with the three excellent Conservative councillors for Addiscombe, Maria Garcia, Russell Jackson and Andrew Price, to discuss Menta's application for seven new buildings - including four skyscrapers, the tallest 51 storeys high - at the eastern end of Cherry Orchard Road.
It was great to see such a good turnout - around 150 people I am told - and to find how united the community is in opposition to this scheme (all but one of the people present were opposed to it). We all want to see the regeneration of the Cherry Orchard Road area but any development must respect the surrounding area and not be at the expense of the quality of life of the existing residents of Addiscombe.
I will be submitting a joint objection with Maria, Russell and Andrew but to show the Planning Committee the depth of feeling on this matter in Addiscombe we need as many people as possible to join us in doing so. You can object:
• online at http://planning.croydon.gov.uk/DCWebPages/AcolNetCGI.gov;
• by email to email@example.com; or
• by letter to Planning Control, Croydon Council, Taberner House, Park Lane, Croydon CR9 1JT.
In each case, you need to include the planning application number, which is 08/03821/P.
Possible objections include:
• The height of the proposed buildings does not respect the ‘edge of centre’ nature of the site. They would be some of the tallest buildings in London and would overlook two-storey residential housing, fundamentally altering the character of this part of Addiscombe (including the recently established East India Conservation Area).
• The proximity of the four towers is contrary to the Council’s urban design policies and would create a ‘canyon wall’ effect down Cherry Orchard Road.
• Taking both the above into account, the application would represent a significant over-development of the site. It would bring thousands of new residents to an already densely populated residential area, which would have a serious impact on local GP surgeries, schools and congestion. In particular:
- the application does not provide sufficient parking for the number of flats proposed and this could affect the ability of existing residents to park near their homes - which, for many residents, is already a significant challenge; and
- the application would increase the number of people using East Croydon station but does not include any measures to increase the capacity of the ticket hall, which is already inadequate. It would therefore have a detrimental impact on existing users of the station.
• The applicant accepts that the development would create a wind tunnel effect at East Croydon station in the winter months.
• The proposed design for the drop-off point for East Croydon Station is fundamentally flawed. It would also stop taxis from being able to provide an effective service to the station.
Finally, a big thank you to Oval School for hosting the meeting and to the Council officers who gave a presentation and answered factual questions about the application.