Development protesters beat “The Incredible Bulk”

Residents have called the building the "Incredible Bulk." Pic: Stop the Incredible Bulk campaign

The building has been branded the “Incredible Bulk.” Pic: Facebook

Campaigners who opposed a new Tower Hamlets housing development are celebrating after the plans were quashed at a council meeting.

Despite recommendation for approval from planning officers, the council’s strategic planning committee did not grant developers Londonewcastle permission to construct a 56-meter housing tower on the Huntingdon Industrial Estate, and another development on Fleet Street Hill.

Members of the east Shoreditch-based Jago Action Group, who started the ‘Stop the Bulk’ campaign to oppose the development, were happy with the decision made at Thursday evening’s meeting.

Tower Hamlets residents and Jago co-chair’s Brad Lochore and Rebecca Collings gave their reaction to the decision.

Lochore said: “We want high quality mixed tenure developments that don’t exploit the neighbourhood by taking residents’ sunlight.”

He went on to speak of his hopes of “a better way forward in London” for housing developments.

Collings added that the decision had “restored [her] faith in democracy”.

A visualisation of the proposed   plans.

A visualisation of the proposed plans. Pic: LondonNewcastle

Residents and councillors believed the Huntingdon Tower plans did not respect the mid-rise policy of the conservation area, which was one of many concerns raised about both developments.

Londonewcastle planned for 44 per cent affordable housing across both sites in total. However, only 10 per cent of the Huntingdon Estate units would have been affordable, with the majority situated at the Fleet Street Hill site.

Those opposed to the development argued that this should have been more balanced.

Following the decision, Councillor John Pearce of Weavers ward told the meeting: “The important thing is to ensure mixed developments throughout Tower Hamlets.”

Developers Londonewcastle said they were “extremely disappointed.”

A company spokesperson added: “These residential-led mixed use developments would have delivered high-quality affordable and private housing at a time when there is an acute shortage in the borough and would have created numerous employment opportunities through the commercial elements of the proposals.”

Londonewcastle are now considering all their options on “how to take the proposed schemes forward.”



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