Metropolitan gets council go-ahead for community regeneration at Clapham Park

| Corporate | Housing

Clapham Park consulation event - love clapham park

Lambeth Council’s Planning Committee has approved Metropolitan’s new development proposal to build more than 2,500 new homes and a wide range of community facilities at Clapham Park in south London.

The approval means the housing association can now move forward to the final stage of the planning consent process – which is expected to be completed in the coming weeks.

It is a major step forward in Metropolitan’s £1.6bn regeneration of Clapham Park, which, following a residents’ ballot, transferred from Lambeth Council to the housing association more than a decade ago. To date, more than 500 new homes have been built and 700 refurbished by Metropolitan.

On completion, the regeneration will double the total number of homes on the estate to 4,080, with 53% of them affordable – a combination of social and affordable rents, as well as homes for shared ownership and shared equity. Overall, the plan will increase the total number of homes for social and affordable rents across Clapham Park.

Metropolitan’s new development proposal is the product of an extensive pre-planning application process involving Lambeth Council, the Greater London Authority, Clapham Park residents and other key local stakeholders.

Metropolitan held regular consultation events from October 2016, working with Clapham Park residents and people living in neighbouring areas to ensure their thoughts and feedback were listened to. The events were also aimed at ensuring residents could see clearly what the new proposals will look and feel like when completed.

Following its submission to Lambeth Council in July, the planning application attracted more than 150 statements of support from residents, stakeholders and members of the public – including letters and petition signatures. The application also received a recommendation for approval from council officers.

As well as new homes, Metropolitan’s planning application includes a new central park and a new community hub with shops and community facilities. There are also improvements to landscaping, play spaces and roads. In addition, the project has the potential to create hundreds of new local jobs.

Sustainability has been a key consideration in the design, which includes more than 4,000 bicycle parking spaces; the use of renewable energy (including the installation of solar panels); and living roofs to support birds and insect diversity.

Once Metropolitan secures full planning consent, work on site is expected to start towards the end of this year.

Geeta Nanda, Chief Executive of Metropolitan, said: “The planning committee approval is very positive news for the residents and our partners in this long-term project.  We all want Clapham Park to be a revitalised, thriving and affordable area that local people will feel proud to call home. We now have approval for our new development proposal which I believe will enable us to achieve that.

“We see our responsibility at Clapham Park as not only to deliver quality new homes, but also to support and invest in the community. Our team on the ground continues to provide sustainable social benefits for residents, such as employment and training opportunities, and money management support – as well as study support sessions for younger residents.

“A lot of work lies ahead, and we will continue to work closely with the community as we move forward.”

Lambeth Council leader Councillor Lib Peck said: “This is an important step forward in the on-going transformation of Clapham Park. Major redevelopments like this one with Metropolitan are essential to deliver the new affordable homes, jobs and investment we need in Lambeth; and as one of the ward councillors for part of the Clapham Park estate, we have worked hard to influence the scheme and ensure the best deal for local residents.”

Ena Smith has lived at Clapham Park since 1995 – she said: “I’ve seen a lot of positive changes at Clapham Park since the regeneration began. I have a nice, spacious new home now – and I feel that the community here has been given the opportunity to come together and grow through various events and projects run by Metropolitan. I’m happy with the direction that things are going, and hopeful for Clapham Park’s future.”

PRP, the award-winning architectural firm, designed the revised plan for Clapham Park. JLL Planning Development & Heritage, the professional real estate services firm, submitted the planning application on behalf of Metropolitan.

Richard Harvey, Design Director of PRP, said: “PRP is proud to be working with Metropolitan in the design and delivery of their vision for the regeneration of Clapham Park. The commitment and collaboration between client, community and our project team on this detailed application is exemplary and will deliver the highest standards of design and quality for this new truly sustainable and inclusive community for the capital.

Mark Connell, Director of JLL Planning Development & Heritage, said: “I commend Metropolitan and PRP for marrying intensive community involvement with outstanding architecture. The detailed planning application looks at the issues that matter to residents and has been rigorously tested to ensure deliverability and usability. This new masterplan puts residents first and is the product of extensive consultation with Lambeth Council and the Greater London Authority.”

In the meantime, work planned under Metropolitan’s original masterplan for Clapham Park continues with the construction of an interim community centre. This new multi-use space will provide residents with use of a large hall, a community kitchen, meeting rooms, IT suite and outdoor space. The centre is scheduled to open towards the end of the summer and will be a resource for the whole community.