The project has been around for some time, and was covered on this site back in October 2016. A sale could mean major changes, which is a real shame as the approved plan got so much right and was probably the best proposal in Woolwich in terms of design.
The approved project between Wellington Street, Calderwood Street, Polytechnic Street and Thomas Street sought to refurbish neglected yet appealing buildings, removed dull blocks formerly used by Thames Polytechnic then the University of Greenwich and opened up interior space to create a new public courtyard. Bars, pubs and a cinema around the new space were on the cards, and a dance school was proposed.
Affordable home levels were the main problem at just 20 per cent, though I wouldn’t expect much more at any future application.
Ominously perhaps, a promotional document for the site proclaims: “The Government has published a series of initiatives which together, could represent one of the most significant modernisation of the planning system in a generation.
The proposals enable changes of use to existing premises without the need for full planning permission. The reforms further indicate that increased massing may be subject to less restrictive policies than currently apply. The Island Site provides a purchaser with an excellent opportunity to capitalise on these proposed reforms.”
Plans were approved by Greenwich Council in 2017 which would see the Island Business Centre demolished.
Approval gained criticism for low levels of “affordable” housing (at 13.5 per cent) and the plan was called in. The Mayor and City Hall’s intervention saw levels increase – but only to 20 per cent.
While low, if a new owner converts existing buildings through permitted rights even that level may not be attained.
Thanks to Adam Thos for the heads up.
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