Ram Brewery: still many reasons to object

Author: Cyril Richert

Ram Brewery Tower: View of the Wandle from the High Street taken with a wide angle lens, in breach of DMPD PolicyIn a previous article we were wondering whether there is any chance to have the new project for the redevelopment of the Ram Brewery site amended or whether this is already a done deal and the Council has already decided to give its blessing to Minerva’s plans.

Since our latest article, the planning application was submitted to the Council on … December 27th! and according to the website there is until 01/03/2013 to make comments.

You will find the different planning applications here:

The planning officer in charge is Toby Feltham, the same one who recommended approval of the first Minerva’s application (which was later refused after one of the biggest government inquiry in recent years in London) and who also recommended approval for the Peabody’s redevelopment, with a report flawed with breach of policies and misleading statements.  The Council is already presenting the scheme as a fait accompli and published images of the scheme along with already approved applications.

There are many other issues with the current proposal:

  • The 35 storey skyscraper has got no justification for the area. Although tall buildings already exist in Wandsworth Town such as the towers built near Southside shopping centre in the 70′s, and the new developments such as the controversial Osier Road, the Ram Brewery site consist currently only of the Capital Studios buildings (3 to 4-storeys) and residential units with 4-storeys (with basements), stepping down to 3-storey buildings currently used as offices, a 2-storey residential house and finally the Crane Public House located on the corner.
  • In planning statements, they ignored the concept of “conservation“, basing all their statements on regeneration.
  • The tall building policy (mostly used to justify the 35 storey tower) is poorly argued with misleading statements. In theory, we should have every single building exceeding 5 storeys confronted to the 15 criteria of policy DMS4(b).
  • Despite moving the tower away from the gas holder, there will be still part of the scheme in proximity. As they promise not to build on the northern part until the gas holder is gone, this means that it could still take 10 to 15 years.
  • The Design Access statement is flawed and we disagree with its conclusion.

Although we think it is highly unlikely that the planning officers will give any consideration to objections to the scheme, it might still be effectual to send objections (do you really want a new skyscraper in Wandsworth town?).

Ref: Planning Application 2012/5286 – Ram Brewery

Toby Feltham
The Planning Service
Wandsworth Council
The Town Hall
Wandsworth High Street
London SW18 2PU
planningapplications@wandsworth.gov.uk

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2 thoughts on “Ram Brewery: still many reasons to object

  1. This application, once hopefully successful, will breathe much needed new life into a town with exceptional potential. It will create a wonderful centre, new jobs, interesting meeting points. I can do nothing but favour this development. A 35 level tower will become a beacon and landmark to what could be an exceptional development.

  2. This is great scheme. I love the design and the way it starts to join the town centre up with the Thames path. I hope this gets built.

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