A total of 656 homes will be built on an industrial site in Walthamstow after two planning applications for adjacent plots were approved by Waltham Forest Council.
The area in South Grove, close to St James Street Station, is now set to be transformed. A business centre, several small warehouses, an MOT garage, large car park, and an abandoned church, will all be cleared to make way for the homes.
Across the two sites 122 homes, less than 19 percent of the total planned, will be designated ‘affordable’. The borough’s own affordable homes target is 50 percent.
As well as homes, which will be built in a series of blocks up to 12 storeys tall, plans include a linear park running east to west through the site. Both developments are also described as ‘car free’ with only parking spaces for disabled drivers provided. Instead, more than 1,000 cycle racks will be built for the area’s new residents. There will also be five new shops – one of which is likely to be a ‘cycle cafe’.
A previously-approved plan for South Grove included a Morrisons supermarket but was ditched when the retail giant pulled out of the scheme. It had attracted significant opposition from local people. The two proposals lodged by developers Metropolitan & Suburban and Hadley Property Group respectively, however, received just five objections.
Mark Lebihan, Hadley’s chief operating officer, said: “We are delighted Waltham Forest Council has decided to share our ambition to revitalise this part of Walthamstow town centre. These homes will be an attractive addition to the St James Street area and will be complemented by new public spaces for everyone to enjoy.”
Hadley Property Group is allocating 97 of its 473 homes for affordable housing, whereas Metropolitan & Suburban is providing 25 affordable homes from its 183-home scheme. Between them the developers will also be contributing around £3million for improvements to local public infrastructure, including healthcare and education provision. This money could include a new building for St James Health Centre.
Altogether, up to 90 new jobs will be created by the schemes, but there is expected to be a net loss of employment from the area as a result of several local businesses being forced to relocate. Because of this, the developers have also agreed to pay a combined £570,000 towards local employment and training schemes.
Construction in South Grove is likely to start in early 2017 and is due to be completed by 2019.
Read Waltham Forest Council’s planning committee reports for the two South Grove schemes:
For Metropolitan & Suburban’s scheme approved on 12th April: http://democracy.walthamforest.gov.uk/documents/s51138/4.1%20-%20153337%20-%20Brunner%20Road%2076-80%20South%20Grove.pdf
For Hadley Property Group’s scheme approved on 3rd May: http://democracy.walthamforest.gov.uk/documents/s51629/4.2%20-%20160333%20-%20South%20Grove.pdf