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Barnet Council approves controversial £4.5billion Brent Cross Cricklewood scheme

PUBLISHED: 10:48 20 November 2009 | UPDATED: 16:33 07 September 2010

THE controversial £4.5billion Brent Cross Cricklewood development was approved at a Barnet Council planning meeting last night (Thursday). The decision marked the end of a unique two-day hearing on the scheme, during which 25 speakers gave their mixed vie

THE controversial £4.5billion Brent Cross Cricklewood development was approved at a Barnet Council planning meeting last night (Thursday).

The decision marked the end of a unique two-day hearing on the scheme, during which 25 speakers gave their mixed views on the new town centre.

Outline planning permission was granted by the council's planning committee because the councillors did not want to miss a once in a lifetime opportunity for much-needed regeneration.

Councillor Darrel Yawitch said: "We have the opportunity now using no public money to improve the transport infrastructure.

"I have scepticism on producing models of what traffic will be in 2026 but it is better than doing nothing because the traffic is already bad.

"You do not get 7,000 new homes without getting more people and more cars, you cannot have your cake and eat it.

"It is a very complex application which will run over 26 years but either we go with this or we get a hodgepodge of applications with no overall design like this one has.

"Things will change and if we approve this we will have some control over it. There is a commercial and economical reality which we have to face up to here. It is an area in dire need of regeneration and if we do nothing we are putting ourselves on a road to decline and decay."

Campaigners have vowed to fight on to lobby the Secretary of State to call in the decision because they believe the scheme is too large with too many far-ranging effects on other communities for it to be solely decided by Barnet.

The scheme is set to transform Brent Cross shopping centre, create 7,500 new homes, 27,000 jobs, three new schools, new office blocks, open spaces and parks, leisure facilities and a new waste transfer facility.

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