London mayor Boris Johnson has approved controversial plans for a new development of office, residential and retail space after the project was previously rejected by the local planning authority.
The “Saatchi block” redevelopment was initially refused planning permission by Camden Council following local opposition, but Johnson has now enacted powers granted to him in 2008 to take over the application and approve it.
Conditions attached to the application will see the developers agree to a number of provisions including a £1.6M contribution towards Crossrail, more than £120,000 being channelled into education and local community facilities, and a further £150,000 invested into street improvements and highway works. johnson said the project would provide a “vital contribution to Crossrail and a boost to the construction industry”.
The area to be redeveloped is known as the Saatchi block after the advertising agency which currently occupies the buildings. The project will include more than 35,000m² of office space and 57 new homes. Camden planning officers originally recommended that permission be granted, but opposition from local groups including the Charlotte Street Association led the council’s development control committee to reject the proposals in May this year.