Sunday, 13 December 2015

Deadline looms for Comments on Re-Development of Grove Road Texaco Site



As mentioned in our newsletter, MEOTRA had heard on the grapevine that the Texaco Garage in Grove Road was going to be redeveloped into dwellings. So just as everyone is snowed under getting ready for Christmas the planning application has just recently been submitted:
PA/15/03079 | Demolition of existing Structures and Buildings associated with the petrol station (Sui Generis) plus redevelopment of the site by the erection of Part 3, Part 4 and Part 5 storey buildings to form 17 new dwellings(C3) (4 x 3 bed town houses with roof top terraces and 13 flats (5 x 1 bed, 7 x 2 and 1 x 3 bed) together with Associated Amenity Space, Refuse Store, Cycle Store, Landscaping, and Related Works. | 53 Grove Road, London, E3 4PE
The planning application stretches to 36 documents. The development is car-free, has storage for some 30 bikes.

Residents have until next Monday 21st December to register any objections to the plans otherwise they are likely to go through without a planning meeting. What do you think of the plans? Please do take a look at the plans and take some time to write with your objections to planningandbuilding@towerhamlets.gov.uk quoting PA/15/03079 Please feel free to copy me in (info@meotra.org.uk)

I like the look of the scheme, but I think is is totally unsuitable for our area. As shown on the applicant's Design and Access statement the site borders two conservation areas (Tredegar Square and Clinton Road Conservation Areas) with Mile End Park forming its other boundaries. The application states "It is an area of architectural and historic interest, with a character and appearance worthy of protection and enhancement". Unfortunately the scheme does neither.

I think the extreme proximity of the site to these conservation areas (and Mile End Park) mean it should be given extra close attention by the planners. In particular:

  1. The scheme will have a detrimental effect on the character and appearance of the neighbouring CAs.
  2. According to the council character appraisal of the Clinton Road CA, a key aspect is the two storey nature of the buildings in Clinton Road. The scheme is too high and indeed is higher than anything nearby.
  3. The recently renovated neighbouring property 51 Grove Road (aka "Mile End Hotel") is the last building of its design and type in Grove Road and surely deserves to be locally listed. The proposed development will totally ruin the setting of this building by dwarfing it.
  4. The density of dwellings is too high. It looks suspiciously like the developer is looking to try it on with "let's see if we can get an extra storey through planning".
  5. The materials used totally contrast with those used elsewhere in the vicinity. 
  6. The proposed dwellings overlook a number of the houses in Clinton Road leading to a substantial loss of privacy.

Why on earth wasn't the site included in one or other of the conservation areas?

Spot the "hole" in the conservation areas.
Portions of the scheme dwarf surrounding buildings.

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