Moving north on the Peninsula from the areas covered in my last post, I passed the recently completed student accommodation. This is a decent building with clean, simple lines and a solid exterior grid. No tacky, randomised cladding here. It looked pretty sleek on a sunny day, with shadows nicely cast on the recessed windows. Far better than the vast majority of student accommodation built over the past 10 years across the country with their plastic cladding and tiny windows.
Just past this is the first stages of development by Knight Dragon – the developers who took control from previous landowners Lend Lease and Quintain, who sat on the land for 15 years building pretty much nothing. I covered this development in the past, as unfortunately the design ignores carefully developed streets, grid layouts and viewpoints from the linear park to the Thames set out in the masterplan. Greenwich council waved through the alterations.
Closer to the river a number of towers are to be built, also from Knight Dragon. The £50m construction contract was awarded recently with construction imminent. The towers are of a conservative design but I have no objection to tall buildings here.
I carried on north towards the dome. At long last, a few more things have popped up to entice the many commuters and visitors to the area. One of these is Now Gallery. Entry is free and opening times are 10-6 all week. 6pm seems a bit early to be closing, and I don’t really get why a major world city has so many places that close so early. Many people will not finish work in time so get out and arrive at the tube station on their way home to visit. Surely 12-8pm on a couple of days would cater to the many commuters?
As well as exhibitions they also have film events. One such is on the 31 October with a number of short films to be shown as part of ‘The Artists Thames on Film’. Entrance is £5 and doors open at 7:30pm. All this is housed in a fantastic newly constructed gallery.
Walking past this area I then proceeded along the riverside path at the tip of the Peninsula, past the high maximum security fences all around the dome with sniffer dogs (bizarre) and arrived at the site of the new 19-storey hotel.
This was rising fast and should be finished reasonably soon. As can be seen in the render above, it unfortunately obscures the dome looking west from the Isle of Dogs as well as harming the views as sweeping around the river.
Heading south on the western half of the Peninsula is far from pleasant. Eventually I arrived at the site of Enderby Wharf. I was surprised to see the Barratt’s development had already commenced. Not much could be seen above the hoardings but the first stage is now in full swing.
Behind the site hoardings Barratt’s are hiding Enderby House, a grade 2 listed building which now lies crumbling. This is the site where the world’s first under water telegraph cables were made giving rise to long distance telephone communications. A campaign group begun earlier this year to preserve the building.
Close to this is the final stage of the Lovell’s Wharf development. This is probably the worst development of all. It looks very ‘budget’ with a low quality mish-mash of poor cladding, and made a hash of the riverside path by pulling it inland away from the rivers edge. This wouldn’t be good enough in a bog standard town. It’s not good enough to see such a building on a prime site by the Thames in Greenwich. At least there is a decent amount of space by the river for any cafe/pub/bar to have outside seating. Unfortunately no one had taken this up. Another site where London’s high rents are preventing any independents from giving things a go?