Search

Anger over plans for 24-storey tower at Ham&High office site in Avenue Road, Swiss Cottage

PUBLISHED: 09:00 28 March 2014 | UPDATED: 11:32 28 March 2014

Artist's impression of what the building in Avenue Road will look like

Artist's impression of what the building in Avenue Road will look like

Archant

Developers who want to demolish the Ham&High’s office building and replace it with a 24-storey tower block have been accused of “spying” on campaigners and “ignoring” the concerns of the community.

A planning application for the building at 100 Avenue Road, Swiss Cottage, was submitted by developers Essential Living last week with designs largely unchanged from proposals shown in November.

Despite inviting residents to submit their views and suggestions on the plans, opponents of the development say their concerns about the height of the tower, the disruption of construction and the pressure on services and amenities due to added housing have been “ignored”.

It also comes as someone working for the developers was spotted at a recent residents’ meeting, leading to claims the developer was “spying”.

The accusation has been dismissed by the developer, but the row highlights the strong lack of trust between some residents and Essential Living.

Elaine Chambers, chairman of Winchester Road Residents’ Association, said: “They haven’t changed a single thing we raised concerns about. Their plans to offer the site up to restaurants and retail means we’ll lose the peace and quiet. The tower also remains 
unsightly and not in keeping with the area. It’s going to overshadow all our houses.

“The area is already densely populated and has been the relentless subject of repeated development for three decades.

“It now needs to be allowed to flourish from its present configuration.”

The development would replace the six-storey building with a 24-storey tower block joined to a five/seven-story building, separated by an arcade through to a green space behind the site.

The tower would be mostly residential, while the smaller building would accommodate retail space. There will be 184 flats, 36 of them classed as affordable, as well as almost 1,000sq m of retail space. But Cllr Jonny Bucknell, representative for Belsize, said there was “no room” to accomodate more residents. “The developers have ignored the community and are just railroading their plans through.” he said.

“The area is already full and our open spaces will be dwarfed by this huge tower. The developer has used underhand tactics throughout the process and I don’t think residents trust them in the slightest.”

But Martin Hughes, spokesman for Essential Living, said the development would bring many benefits. “Our high quality proposals will deliver much-needed new homes including affordable housing, improved public space and access as well as providing new jobs and attracting further investment,” he said.

“Whilst we recognise that some local concerns have been expressed about the tower element, we firmly believe that it is the right location for a landmark building.

“This has been the subject of independent review by the Design Council who stated the site is a good place to locate a tall building and that the proposed tower will provide a unique character to the Swiss Cottage that is lacking.”

The Ham&High is a tenant in the building and will move to new offices in Charles House, Finchley Road.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

24 minutes ago

With Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe expecting to spend her third Christmas in Evin prison, the foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt used a visit to Iran to slam the middle-eastern nation’s imprisonment of UK dual nationals including the West Hampstead mum.

42 minutes ago

Police want the public’s help to identify a man wanted over two Golders Green burglaries.

12:08

Dawn Barnes will be looking to upset the odds as she has been reselected as Lib Dem candidate for the Hornsey and Wood Green seat.

10:23

Eastenders actor and Celebrity Masterchef winner John Partridge will be switching on the Archway Christmas lights.

09:29

Hampstead’s Lisa Deaner, 54, has been shortlisted for an Anthony Nolan Supporters award by the blood cancer charity.

07:00

Save Swiss Cottage is crowdfunding for a judicial review into Camden Council’s decision to approve the Construction Management Plan (CMP) for 100 Avenue Road last week.

Yesterday, 16:55

A workshop owner who engraves benches on Hampstead Heath was forced to break in to his own business to retrieve machinery after the landlord changed the locks and evicted him over unpaid rent.

Yesterday, 14:00

Champagne corks were popped on Saturday as the well-known former Blustons clothes store in Kentish Town has been re-opened as a vintage charity shop.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now