Communities to put together proposals for Murphy's Yard redevelopment site

Image of what the view of tower blocks in Murphy's Yard development will look like from Hampstead Heath.

Image of what the view of tower blocks in Murphy's Yard development will look like from Hampstead Heath, according to the developer - Credit: Peter Stewart Consultancy

After developers withdrew an unpopular application for tower blocks at Murphy's Yard, community workshops are taking place to put together alternative ideas.

Dartmouth Park Neighbourhood Forum (DPNF) and Camden Community Makers are co-ordinating community-led collaborative workshops on July 14 and 16.

They intend to submit the results to developer Folgate Estates.

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

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

Folgate withdrew its application to build multiple high rise towers following major objections from communities in Hampstead, Highgate, Dartmouth Park, Gospel Oak and Kentish Town "to allow further consultation". 

Its plans included up to 825 homes, and up to 95,000 sqm of industrial space and offices as well as restaurants, and healthcare and leisure facilities.  

More than a dozen tower blocks, four of them between 14 and 19 storeys high, had been planned.

The car-free site would have a new pedestrian and cycle route – the Heath Line – earmarked to connect Hampstead Heath and Gospel Oak to Kentish Town. 

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The traffic lights on Gordon House Road, used as the access point, may be moved to aid pedestrian and cycle access to and from the Heath.

Footfall on Gordon House Road where Gospel Oak station sits can double or treble at peak times

Footfall on Gordon House Road where Gospel Oak station sits can double or treble at peak times - Credit: Judith Silver

A collection of 17 groups, including DPNF, Lissenden Gardens Tenants Association and Kentish Town Action, proposed an alternative scheme. It included a mix of housing tenures and types, and protection of the view of Hampstead Heath from Kentish Town, as set out in the Kentish Town Neighbourhood Plan, as well as panoramic views from Hampstead Heath.

The first community workshop will be an online session on Thursday, July 14 from 6.30pm to 8pm.

The second is in person on Saturday, July 16 from 11am to 2.30pm at the old Gospel Oak Nursery site next to Gospel Oak Health Centre off of Lismore Cirrus.

The workshops will have activities and imagery on themes including housing, community facilities, construction, environment, public realm, traffic, and workspace.

Murphy's Yard entrance at Gordon House Road during non peak hours

Murphy's Yard entrance at Gordon House Road during non peak hours - Credit: Judith Silver

Emily O'Mara said: "We want as many people to attend either or both workshops to share their local knowledge and experience.

"The workshops are open to anyone and everyone living, working and studying in the area who cares what happens at Murphy's Yard." 

A spokesperson for Folgate said it was "good to hear" the community shares their ambition of redeveloping Murphy's Yard.

They added: "We need to review the withdrawn application and understand our options before we can resume meaningful conversations with our neighbours."

To register for Charrette: Community-Led workshops for the Design of Murphy's Yard visit www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/camden-community-makers-33342679321