CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

We can see the destruction of the Community Investment Plan here

08 October, 2020

• ARGUABLY Camden Council’s Community Investment Programme in Gospel Oak and Haverstock has destroyed more of its buildings than the Luftwaffe in World War II.

We have numerous “bomb” sites and boarded-up areas supposedly earmarked for “regeneration”.

Over 40 workshops which employed local people have been lost; three community buildings also demolished; and we have a net loss of over 60 council-rent homes with many families evacuated.

Promises from the council for “investment” included not only replacement of “unfit” homes but new community facilities.

The largest new homes site, for over 200, was due for completion back in 2017 to allow for the return of displaced residents. Not a brick has been laid.

Three-year planning permission has run out on four other sites which, at the time, involved extensive and expensive residents’ consultation. These sites remain boarded up.

Yet another estate (West Kentish Town), which currently has over 300 homes, is now scheduled for “regeneration” with a “planned” starting date in 2023 and completion in 2034.

Yet another large estate, Wendling, is supposedly awaiting a “ballot” on its future “regeneration” .

Residents and business are kept in the dark about reasons for delays; even local councillors do not seem to know what is (not) going on.

However we hear that there is a secret plan to build an additional 1,200 homes, mainly for sale, to finance the brave new world – without any intelligence on the London housing market post Covid-19.

We went through “open” such planning exercises back in 2010 and again in 2015; the many “bomb” sites are the results. Then there was a booming local housing market to finance grandiose plans. Can we now expect a third destructive wave?

In 1940 we defeated the Luftwaffe… but the council now?

MICK FARRANT,
NW5

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