Lambeth Council places new restrictions on Lilford Road Business Centre redevelopment
A range of restrictions has been imposed on the proposed controversial redevelopment of the Lilford Road Business Centre following lobbying by local residents and Myatt’s Fields’ Labour team.
The development is likely to bring new jobs to the area and create a fresh start for the dilapidated buildings at the business centre. There are also proposals to create new green landscaping around the site and install sustainable travel infrastructure for employees, like bike storage sheds.
But many residents were concerned that the original proposals would have allowed delivery vehicles to move to and from the site for more than 100 hours each week which could mean a huge increase in traffic in the heart of a residential area that Lambeth Council has acknowledged is a congestion and pollution hotspot.
The restrictions were imposed by the Council’s Planning Committee at its most recent meeting. Cllr Paul Gadsby told the committee:
“I want to focus my comments tonight on a real concern in the community about an increase in traffic from this application.
“The applicant is proposing a window of 16 hours every weekday when vehicles can move to and from the site: the Council’s transport assessment suggests that peak hour movements will increase by 60%, this will result in hundreds of extra vehicle movements to and from the site each month, perhaps thousands over the course of a year. And while the developer has ruled out pleasingly the use of takeaway deliver firms in response to the community’s concerns, it hasn’t ruled out grocery or other high intensity delivery outfits: this model being pushed by developers across London is causing chaos in other residential areas, like Lilford Road, where residents are subject to increased noise, congestion and pollution, especially from speeding motorbikes.
“It should be noted that Lambeth Council has identified this area as a traffic hotspot with millions to be allocated to reduce traffic in the area: residents might rightly ask if this is a waste of money should this application go through unamended.”
As a result of the campaign by the community and councillors, the committee approved the application but placed more than 30 conditions on the development to address the community’s concerns.
- Tough monitoring procedures to ensure the applicant abides by the delivery hours approved by the committee.
- A requirement for the developer to appoint a “community liaison officer” who would be on call to answer any concerns raised by local residents.
- The conditions also confirmed that delivery hours would be limited to 7am to 11pm weekdays – down from the 24 hour delivery window originally proposed.
- So called “dark kitchens” (takeway food outlets) would be barred from operating on the premises.
Responding to the outcome of the meeting, Cllr Gadsby said:
“Cllr Gallop and I want to thank local residents, MPs and community groups, including the Lilford Road Action Group and the Brixton Society, for the huge amount of effort they have put into improving these proposals.
“We did not get everything we wanted and would have liked to have seen further reductions in delivery times to and from the site, however, the plans have undergone a lot of change from the original proposals from the developers last year. This includes tougher traffic restrictions on the businesses using the site to rule out the very worst high delivery businesses which are unsuitable in a residential neighbourhood. We acknowledge that the developer has also listened to local residents, with a number of the changes made voluntarily by them following a lengthy period of discussion in the past six months.
“However, we will be watching the development as it progresses. The planning committee spent more than two hours debating the traffic points made by residents and councillors: it is now over to the developer and Lambeth’s Building Control Team to make sure the promises made at the committee are upheld, especially those relating to ensuring there no adverse effects on local roads and pollution from the site.”
Do you have an idea for a “parklet” in Myatt’s Fields?
Roaside parking spaces in Myatt’s Fields are set to be handed over to residents to be converted into an outdoor community area.
Local neighbourhoods are being asked for their ideas to make streets greener and cleaner as part of Lambeth council’s new ‘parklet’ programme, supported by the Big Shift development fund.
Parklets are car parking bays that are repurposed to become public spaces that can be enjoyed by everyone. Each Ward in the Borough will get one, including Myatt’s Fields.
Residents can submit their designs for their own local community parklet, which they would help to maintain. They could include creating new social spaces with tables and seating, extra cycle storage or new green space. Residents are also being asked to nominate areas where they would like to see a parklet.
Cllr Rezina Chowdhury, cabinet member for Sustainable Lambeth and Clean Air, said:
“Parklets are a great way to create spaces where people can meet, socialise, and make neighbourhoods more pleasant by increasing greenery.
“Parklets can play a huge role in bringing people together whether it’s to sit down and have a chat or work together to tend new community gardens.
“We want as many local people as possible to tell us why their areas could benefit from new public space.”
Local councillors Paul Gadsby and Annie Gallop said:
“Myatt’s Fields has a rich history of the community driving forward gardening, bio-diversity projects and green space improvements. Across our neighbourhood we have many parks, allotments, planters and gardens that are there because local people care and invest in them – with Myatt’s Fields Park being a particularly shining example.
“With residents’ support we have helped to secure funding and support for a number of projects, including for a rewilding project on the Knatchbull Road roundabout, a new sustainable drainage scheme on Myatt’s Fields South and a tree planting programme that is particularly focused on our estates.
“We encourage residents to come forward with ideas and suggestions for the parklet project: in 2021 we successfully lobbied the Council to refurbish the Cowley Road and Vassall Road junction with new cycle paths, green planters and level accessways. This is the kind of seemingly small scale transformation that can make a real difference to the local area. So, please get your ideas in to the Council!”
Find out more about the Community Parklet Scheme and submit your designs before the deadline on May 28.
Councillors to demand substantial changes to plans for new development at Lilford Road business centre
Substantial changes to controversial plans to redevelop an industrial site in Myatt’s Fields are being demanded by our local Labour councillors.
The old Lilford Road Business Centre has been the subject of plans for redevelopment from a company, AG Bloom.
While welcoming the idea of bringing new jobs to the area and creating a fresh start for the dilapidated buildings at the business centre, local councillors have been concerned that the proposals to let 24 hour delivery vehicles move to and from the site could result in a huge increase in traffic in the heart of a residential area that Lambeth Council has itself acknowledged is a congestion and pollution hotspot.
The developer has already been forced to make significant changes following a campaign by councillors and local residents.
The threat of a high-intensity food delivery service – condemned as “madness”– has already been headed off. The developer has submitted a revised application that bars these so called dark kitchen outfits from operating out of the new commercial units, and restricts delivery times to 7am to 11pm – a significant change to the original proposals which would have allowed 24-hour weekday deliveries.
But Councillors Gadsby and Gallop say the compromises don’t go far enough and will press their case at next week’s Lambeth Council Planning Committee meeting.
They want further assurances that businesses which move into the Lilford Road Business Centre won’t damage the local environment or leave the local community with a nightmare of high traffic and pollution. They insist that operational hours should be restricted further. They will also urge the council to ensure that landscaping and greening plans are part of the development.
The councillors said:
“It is encouraging that the developer has moved some way to addressing the concerns of residents and local councillors. As we have said during our initial comments on these proposals, we do believe it would be madness to have a high intensity delivery service in the heart of a residential area that Lambeth itself has acknowledged is a hotspot for traffic problems. The borough has committed to spend significant public funds to address the current issues around Lilford Road, Loughborough Road and Myatt’s Fields park and we are extremely concerned these proposals will work against these plans.
“We will be attending the Lambeth planning committee meeting on Tuesday, 9 May to ask for further restrictions on delivery hours from the site. There are other improvements we would like to see, including more effort from the developer to work with local community groups to enhance the landscaping and greening plans attached to the development.”
The Lambeth planning committee will be taking place on Tuesday, 9 May from 7pm: the agenda for the meeting is here.
Private, for-profit company still “unable to provide key information” on plans for takeover of local council homes
A private, for-profit company which is trying to take over some local council homes in Myatt’s Fields has still to provide vital information on how it would run vital services including repairs, according to Lambeth Council.
After almost six months, Vision Homes (Lambeth) LTD and PACCA TMO LTD, are still yet to produce key details of their plans that would allow a consultation and then ballot to take place on their proposals to grab the ownership of more than 200 council tenant properties on the Lothian estate.
The claim was made in a letter from the Interim Cabinet Member for Better Homes and Reducing Homelessness, Cllr Tim Windle, to residents last week.
The message, supported by local Myatt’s Fields Councillors Paul Gadsby and Annie Gallop, re-iterated Lambeth’s opposition to the proposals – – which the Council believes could end up costing council tenants more money. A copy of the letter is below:
A date for the proposed ballot has still not yet been set. Council tenant and leaseholder properties affected by these proposals are on the following streets — unfortunately, owing to national legislation, leaseholders are barred from voting despite facing their leases being transferred to Vision Homes should there be a Yes vote:
- Lothian Road (Dalkeith House, Silverburn House and Bathgate House)
- Langton Road
- Frederick Crescent
- Myatt Road
- Halsmere Road
- Patmos Road
- Tindal Street
- Elliott Road
- Cancell Road
Bees Road planting event on the Myatt’s South estate!
Lambeth Council and the Friends of Myatt’s South will be hosting a seed planting event on Saturday, 22 April (11am-1pm) as part of the borough’s Bee’s Road initiative.
Supported by the Mayor of London, Lambeth was awarded £440,000 as part of Sadiq Khan’s rewilding initiative last year, with this investment aimed at providing additional funding for the Council’s Bee Roads initiative. This ambitious programme is aimed at converting ten miles of roadside land, including roundabouts and verges of roads, into wildflower mini-meadows which will provide habitats for wildlife including butterflies, bumble-bees and other pollinators.
Full details of the event are below – all residents welcome!
New bike storage hanger for Silverburn House
Lambeth Council has confirmed that another new cycle storage hanger will be installed in Myatt’s Fields at Silverburn House on the Lothian estate.
The installation is a direct response to lobbying from local councillors who made a formal request to the Council for the hanger following feedback from Silverburn House residents during recent roving surgeries on the estate. Many households were having to store their bikes in their flats owing to a lack of cycle storage in the area.
Spaces in the new hanger will cost just £3.50 a month. The Council will be consulting residents in Silverburn House about a possible location for the new hanger before it is installed.
The latest announcement follows the installation of a number of new hangers in Myatt’s Fields, including on Cromwell Road (see picture below), the Paulet Road estate, Knatchbull Road, Lilford Road and other estates in the neighbourhood.
Local Councillors Paul Gadsby and Annie Gallop, said:
“We are really pleased that another cycle storage hanger is being installed in Myatt’s Fields – and would like to thank the Council for listening to resident feedback. Of course, we will be pushing for more hangers as clearly there is a big public demand for cheap, affordable cycle storage space.”
More information about the bike hanger programme, and details of how to nominate your street to be considered for more cycle storage, can be found here.
Do you have an issue to raise with our local safer neighbourhood team?
Local residents will have an opportunity to raise any issues, opinions or concerns they have about community safety in Myatt’s Fields at a Safer Neighbourhood Team meeting in April.
The meeting, organised by the ward’s police team, is open to all residents and will review local anti-social behaviour, crime and community safety issues in our area.
April’s meeting will be held on Wednesday, 26 April, 7-8pm at the Myatt’s North Community Centre.
If you are unable to make the meeting and have a local community safety issue to raise, please feel free to contact your local councillors here.
New action by Lambeth Council to address traffic chaos on Cranmer Road
Mounting traffic chaos in and around Cranmer Road is being tackled following action by Myatt’s Fields Labour councillors.
Local residents have complained that the area is often jammed with commercial vehicles, making life difficult for residents and harming the environment.
Lambeth Council has begun implementing a raft of new actions on the road.
Cllr Paul Gadsby outlined the local community’s frustrations at January’s public Lambeth Council meeting, explaining that residents were suffering from unacceptable levels of noise, congestion and pollution on the road.
He claimed this was caused by delivery drivers on motorbikes from takeaway and grocery firms Just Eat and Gorillas who were clogging the narrow street, operating early in the morning and late at night, and parking their motorbikes on pavements.
The lobbying by councillors led to a walkabout on the road with Cllr Gadsby, residents who live on the nearby Holland Town estate (including the estate’s resident association chairwoman) and Cllr Rezina Choudhary, the cabinet member with responsibility for transport. The visit demonstrated first hand the negative impact of these problems on the daily lives of residents throughout the area.
Following the visit, Lambeth Council confirmed:
- Enforcement officers from Lambeth are now regularly patrolling the area and issuing fines to drivers.
- The Council has formerly written to Just Eat and Gorillas raising resident concerns, as well as threatening further enforcement action.
- The Council’s officers will be visiting the local delivery hubs of both companies to ensure drivers are being provided with proper respite and rest spaces.
Local councillors have also delivered a leaflet to Cranmer Road – and during a recent roving surgery to nearby Foxley Road – advising residents on how they can report traffic idling and other offences in the area. You can read the newsletter here.
Local Councillors Paul Gadsby and Annie Gallop said:
“It is positive that the Council has taken action which does appear to have reduced some of the problems which have been making the lives of residents on Cranmer Road and surrounding local streets. It is however early days and we want to see a long term reduction in the problems that have been making everyone’s lives a misery on these streets.”
“We are disappointed that both delivery companies allowed the situation to get to this stage and for repeatedly ignoring residents when these issues were raised with them. We will continue to monitor the situation and would urge residents to report any instances of traffic idling to the Council. Thank you to everyone in the area who brought this to our attention.”
“Hooligans” to bring love in a time of tyranny to Myatt’s Fields
A sell-out show born in the bomb-shelters of Kyiv is to be staged at our local Longfield Hall at the end of March.
Called Bunker Cabaret, the show is described as a mix of music, poetry, dance and film and is a “powerful exploration of love versus totalitarianism, and the personal conflicts of making art in time of war”.
The show is the work of a company called the Hooligan Art Community, who say it was developed partly in the bomb-shelters of Kyiv. The Longfield dates are a stop on a UK tour following a sold-out run in London last September.
Two performances will be held on Thursday 30 March and Friday 31 March, with tickets ranging from £5 – £22.
You can buy tickets here.
Myatt’s Fields communities to benefit from Lambeth’s tree-planting promise
Local estates in Myatt’s Fields will be among the first to benefit from Lambeth’s promise to plant thousands of trees across the Borough
Lambeth Labour have committed to plant more than 5,000 trees to enhance our communities and help address the climate emergency.
The ward’s Labour councillors have welcomed the initiative and pledged to lobby for more planting in the area.
New trees will appear on the Cowley estate, at locations including near Lauderdale and Garlinge Houses. Other sites include:
- Myatt’s Fields South estate
- Vassall Road
- Penford Road
- Templar Street
- Tindall Street
- Halsmere Road
Two new trees will also be planted in Myatt’s Fields Park.
Local Councillors Paul Gadsby and Annie Gallop said:
“We are delighted that twenty one new trees will be planted in Myatt’s Fields: new landscaping and green planting really helps enhance our local community, and, of course, plays its part in addressing the climate change emergency.”
“We are particularly pleased these tree planting plans come hot on the heels of other positive environmental announcements, including the Bees Road plan for the Knatchbull roundabout and the sustainable drainage scheme for Myatt’s South estate.”
“We will keep lobbying for further tree planting across our area in the years to come.”