Citroen Garage site at Capital Interchange Way, Brentford (Hounslow Council ref P/2017/4692 and Richmond Council ref 17/4104/CON)
The planning application was refused permission by Hounslow Council but has been called in by the London Mayor. The development is within a new “Opportunity Area” identified as having the capacity to accommodate at least 7,500 new homes and 14,000 new jobs. The Mayor is looking to increase the proportion of affordable housing and has said “I will of course weigh up concerns raised about the impact on nearby heritage sites with the pressing need for more new and affordable homes in London.” The application will be considered at a hearing at City Hall later this year.
We have submitted objections to the redevelopment of this site which would provide a mixed use scheme of 427 residential units (Class C3) including 40% affordable housing with ancillary facilities, flexible uses (within Classes A1, A2, A3 and B1) and a nursery (Class D1). It would comprise buildings of 12, 13, 15, 16 and 18 storeys in height, with associated cycle and car parking, playspace, landscaping and public realm improvements. We focused our comments on the need to consider this scheme in the context of the aggregate effect of the large number of proposed developments within the small area between Kew Bridge Station and Chiswick Roundabout, including the new Brentford Stadium (buildings up to 17 storeys), the proposed Capital Interchange Way development (three tower blocks up to 20 storeys high), L&Q’s Wheatstone House development near Chiswick Roundabout, the Chiswick Curve (currently in appeal) and the proposed Hudson Square development on the north side of Chiswick Roundabout. The future of the Fountains leisure Centre may also be uncertain. We commented that the key issues were:
- the proposed scheme contributes to the massive over development of this small area;
- this results in a cluster of tall and frankly, in aggregate, unattractive tower blocks;
- the prospect of a material and exponential increase in traffic congestion and pollution where the South and North Circular arteries – and the A4 leading westwards – are already frequently heavily clogged. Pollution levels are already in excess of legal limits in the proposed area;
- a strain on public transport
- a deleterious effect on vistas eastwards and northwards from the Royal Botanic Gardens and the historic river front.
We said attention should also be paid to the adequacy of health and other services given the large proposed increase in local population, particularly the availability of increased GP practices and the adequacy of road widths for the anticipated increase in cycle traffic from all of the schemes.
We referred to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and Hounslow’s Local Plan provisions in support of our objections.
The developers for this site are holding a public exhibition to seek views on their proposals before a planning application is made to Hounslow Council.
You can see what is proposed here: https://homesforbrentford.commonplace.is/
The exhibition is at Brentford Leisure Centre on Tuesday 5th September from 11.00 – 19.00 and on Thursday 7th September from 16.00 to 19.00.