High rise blocks should be demolished said think tank

Author: Jacqui Bowers

How can Wandsworth Planning Officers continue to work with developers and ignore the research concerning high rise developments?

Policy Exchange think tank has launched its report on 24th January – Create Streets.

This report states:

“There is wealth of evidence that multi-storey living leads to higher crime rates, weaker communities, and poorer health and education outcomes for residents. Recent changes to the planning system give a chance to change this that local government and neighbourhoods should seize to take control of redevelopment in their area. …
Studies have shown that residents of high-rise blocks or large estates suffer from more stress, mental health difficulties, neurosis and marriage breakdowns. Children living in high rise accommodation suffer from increased hyperactivity, hostility and juvenile delinquency even when you adjust for social economic status. Despite the fact social tenants make up only 21% of families with children, they make up 79% of those families living on the fifth floor of a building or above. In London, nearly one third (31%) of all families with children living in social housing reside on the second floor or above. Nearly all those who can choose housing in the private sector reject multi-storey living and choose houses or low rise flats…

Findings include:

  • 52,000 households with children who are social renters live on the third floor or above (40,000 of which are in London)
  • 20,000 households with children who are social renters live on the fifth floor or above (16,000 of which are in London)
  • At least eighty nine per cent of Britons want to live in a house on a street. Zero per cent (i.e. not one person) in one poll said they wanted to live in a tower block flat.
  • Multi-storey housing costs more to build per square metre than other high density options. A ten-storey building is 10 per cent more expensive to build per square metre than a five-storey building. A fifty-storey building is 60 per cent more expensive.

The disastrous multi-storey estates of the past were economically unviable but only possible due to government subsidies.”

Why did Planning Officers support Peabody’s flawed planning application which included high rise building when over 300 objections were raised by residents in the area and reduced the number of social housing?

Why were the Planning Officers ignorant of the Policy Exchange’s imminent report that reject the development of high rise flats instead of terraced houses?

Why did the Planning Committee not listen to the Northcote Ward Councillors who had raised the inappropriateness of this development?

Surely Wandsworth Council must withdraw their permission for the Peabody development in the light of this report and draw up plans to ensure that Clapham Junction is not suitable for any high rise developments.

1 thought on “High rise blocks should be demolished said think tank

  1. Phase 2 of the Peabody ‘St John’s Hill’ has come with a further addition planning application 2015/6393 including a 7 storey opposite Eckstein Road. Comments on this planning application can be made until Friday 8th January 2016 and as yet no one has made any. Who knows what will be included in Phase 3 – perhaps a few more storey on the 12 storey building?

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