Murky Depths

News in London and beyond

Charlton, Woolwich

£700k of Mayoral funding for Charlton “workstack”

The Mayor of London yesterday announced spending £23.7 million on 42 projects as part of the latest round of the Good Growth Fund.

Greenwich’s winning bid was £700,000 for the Charlton workstack, which I’ve covered for some years.

According to the award: “The Charlton Workstack project is an innovative new approach to industrial intensification. It is a new building providing 14 new stacked industrial workspaces in Charlton Riverside.  Delivered by the Greenwich Enterprise Board, the spaces will provide much needed high-quality industrial workspace in an area undergoing significant regeneration.”

New Charlton housing scheme on industrial land

Industrial intensification? This is all a bit curious as industrial space and employment is being lost in the area for numerous housing schemes.

And given there are so many smaller, empty commercial units across the borough (with many being converted to housing or lying vacant for years) is this a priority?

Gatehouse on right

The Greenwich Enterprise Board are behind the project and have some prime sites such as the former Royal Arsenal Gatehouse in Woolwich. Would that site not be better used as commercial space – such as a bar/restaurant – to bring life to Beresford Square? It’d improve Woolwich town centre, bring footfall from the Arsenal site over the road and GEB could use income to provide sites elsewhere.

The vision before Beresford Square was revamped have not come to pass

It’s interesting to look at bids in other boroughs.

Southwark:

“To improve and unlock key areas of public realm that are most used by vulnerable people and local businesses as well as provide improvements to the high street including shop front improvements, meanwhile activation, business support and public art.”

And Croydon:

“Based on in-depth local engagement, the project will provide a coordinated package of public realm, community space, sustainable transport and business support measures to bring together different parts of the community and provide civic infrastructure to enable good growth”.

Here’s Hammersmith & Fulham:

“A multi-faceted place-based project focused on improving the high street and market along North End Road.”

Notice how many boroughs realise the importance of public space and projects which support a wide cross section of society?

Enfield Council are going for:

“A high street focused local regeneration project based in Angel Edmonton comprising an ‘urban room’ for community engagement, the creation of low-cost office and retail space in disused garages and a laundry yard, and public realm improvements at targeted spots along Fore Street”.

So in Enfield they are creating low cost space AND public realm improvements.

Haringey, for example, are using funds for:

“A strategic area-based regeneration project that includes co-designed youth and social inclusion projects and the creation of safe routes to schools in Wood Green and Noel Park to improve street greening, air quality and promote active travel. The project also includes an innovative approach to address issues facing the local high street using a town centre re-positioning strategy and a pilot project to convert an existing retail unit into a piece of civic infrastructure.”

Newham are to use it for:

“A strategic town centre project that includes improving Green Street high street and intensifies Queen’s Market by bringing in new programmes and activities needed in the town centre as identified by the local community.”

Greenwich borough won’t see a project that improves the area for many but cabins where employment space is being lost by deliberate policy – and where small units and spaces are hardly running short.

 

 

 

 

 

6 Comments

  1. Ashley

    Yet again another pointless waste undertaken by Labour Greenwich when the Realm in plumstead and surrounding areas full into disrepair! Plenty of pavements, Roads and Green spaces would benefit more from these much needed funds.

  2. Greenwich council is good at creating white elephants.

  3. Graham

    You can say that again Anonymous201481 and Ashley.

    I would like to see the Royal Arenal Gatehouse converted to a pub or restaurant to bring life back to Beresford Square and Woolwich. As this area needs to be revitalised. It would also provide a local hospitality jobs for local people.

    As the area is due to be re-developed under the Spray Street redevelopement scheme.

  4. CDT

    I think the Greenwich Enterprise Board could work with Employers, Local Authorities, Government Departments etc.

    To provide employment training schemes so people can train for new careers in Engineering, Construction, Electrical Installation and other employment skills like painting and Decorating, Plumbing,Which we will provide people with new skills for the future.

    I think this new building would have been ideal for this kind of use, Alternatively as we are seeing more commercial buildings becoming empty around the Borough that some of these may be suitable to be coverted to provide these servcies.

    These training services have been lacking around the Borough since the Greenwich Training Company closed many many years ago,

  5. Graham

    I agree CDT, We have a lot of apprenticeship schemes for younger adults aged 18 to 24 but there is a need for a similar scheme to help those aged between 25 and over incluing those in their 40’s and 50 who are looking to change careers or looking to go self employed.

    It will give more younger and older people the chance to gain new skills for their future,

  6. CDT

    I think now more than ever we are going to need an Employment Training Centre to train people in new skills for future careers when the Country finally starts to recover from the Coronavirus outbreak.

    I think it is even more important now that Greenwich Enterprise Board, Greenwich Council, Government Departments and Employment Training Providers get together to work out this can best be acheived.

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