More new homes planned

New music venue included, but affordable housing target missed

Equipment Works

Designs for ‘Equipment Works’ in Blackhorse Lane, to be built by developer U+I

A new music venue, supermarket, and nearly 400 homes will be built as part of the latest schemes to get the go ahead in the borough’s biggest redevelopment area.

The skyline over Blackhorse Lane is already dotted with cranes as the first of 2,500 new homes are built in an area that was once a major industrial zone.

Two more schemes have now won planning permission, the largest of which is called ‘Equipment Works’ and will cost £130million to build. The site currently comprises four warehouses formerly used as a bus factory, and whose current use includes the manufacture of luxury desserts. These will be demolished and replaced with 337 homes, of which 80, or 24 percent, will be affordable housing. Space for small business workshops, shops, and cafes, are also set to be created.

Simon Hesketh, from developer U+I, said: “There is already substantial investment in the Blackhorse Road area and Equipment Works will form the heart of a new community, acknowledging the distinct history of the site and bringing fresh vitality to the area, building on its industrial heritage.”

Adjacent to this site, at the junction with Forest Road, the historic Standard music venue will again host live performances after planning permission was granted for the derelict pub to be transformed. The new venue will be built alongside a bar, Turkish Food Centre supermarket, and 50 homes none of which will be designated ‘affordable’ housing.

The Standard began hosting gigs in 1986 and welcomed artists including Suzi Quatro and Kula Shaker, as well as comedians Alan Davies, Harry Enfield and Jack Dee. But it closed in 2011 after its popularity declined.

Before granting approval for a new venue to be built on the same site, Waltham Forest Council heard arguments from the developer that the high cost of building the music venue prevented the inclusion of affordable housing in its plans. The authority’s affordable housing target is 50 percent from all developments.