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New cycle bridge, park and housing among changes mooted for Kentish Town, Gospel Oak and Dartmouth Park

PUBLISHED: 11:25 28 July 2020 | UPDATED: 11:33 28 July 2020

The map of the planning framework, stretching from Gospel Oak down into Kentish Town. Picture: Camden Council

The map of the planning framework, stretching from Gospel Oak down into Kentish Town. Picture: Camden Council

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A planning document shaping how Kentish Town will be redeveloped has been adopted by Camden Council - but a neighbourhood group fears current proposals could create a “wall of towers”.

Murphy's Yard, a major development site part of the planning document. Picture: Camden CouncilMurphy's Yard, a major development site part of the planning document. Picture: Camden Council

The Kentish Town Planning Framework (KTPF), which also covers Gospel Oak and Dartmouth Park, is a supplementary planning document outlining how largely industrial sites around the railway could be redeveloped.

Two major sites in the KTPF are Regis Road, a 7.5-hectacre site to the west of Kentish Town Tube, and Murphy’s Yard, 6.8 hectares west of Highgate Road.

The council approved the KTPF on July 20 and it came into effect on Monday (July 27).

Camden sees the KTPF as a “key tool” for the future development of “under-used” areas but the opposition said it was a “missed opportunity”.

Plans are afoot to improve access between Hampstead Heath and Kentish Town with a new 'Heath line'. Picture: Camden CouncilPlans are afoot to improve access between Hampstead Heath and Kentish Town with a new 'Heath line'. Picture: Camden Council

Cllr Danny Beales (Lab, Cantelowes), Camden Council’s planning chief, said: “The planning framework has been developed working closely with the community and local neighbourhood forums.

“It is a key tool helping us shape the future of this important area.

“Camden Council and the local community want to see a comprehensive high-quality redevelopment that delivers better connections, a new pedestrian route to the Heath, as well as a new mixed-use neighbourhood, with much needed new genuinely affordable homes, green space and more local jobs.”

A new pedestrian and cycle bridge – part of a ‘Heath line’ connecting Hampstead Heath and Kentish Town – is planned.

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Redevelopment is anticipated around streets including Highgate Road, Makers Lane, York Mews and Holmes Road.

The railway arches along the western edge of the Regis Road site could also be reopened, and a new park and public square, around Kentish Town Tube and the high street, has been mooted.

Cllr Oliver Cooper (Hampstead Town), Camden Conservatives’ leader, said the KTPF risked “cramming” homes, making it feel “inhospitable”.

Cllr Cooper said: “This framework fails to strengthen Camden’s flimsy Local Plan and its inadequate provision for housing for older and less mobile residents.

“That needs to be fixed urgently to ensure that the community is mixed in age, physical health, and family size.”

The Dartmouth Park Neighbourhood Forum said the council had done a “decent job” involving residents and businesses.

But the group’s chair, Maya De Souza, warned the final designs for Murphy’s Yard needed to improve on the “wall of towers of flats” presented previously.

She said: “We need to see a development that reflects the special qualities of our precious corner of London.

“That would be a zero emission green neighbourhood of genuinely affordable and community-led low-rise, high-density, inter-generational housing for local families and essential workers, well integrated with spaces for small businesses and community facilities.”

The Kentish Town Neighbourhood Forum said the policies of its neighbourhood plan were reflected in the council’s planning framework.

For more information on the KTPF click here.


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