With the announcement by John Lewis (JLP) of plans to build on the Waitrose site, Stop the Towers (STT) has been endeavouring to discover more about the proposed development.
As if two tower blocks (22 storeys and 13 storeys) next to West Ealing Station isn’t enough, now JLP has announced plans to redevelop the Waitrose site on the other side of the station in Alexandria Road, W13.
STT spoke with JLP this week, and they’ve confirmed they’d be using the argument of an ‘emerging cluster’ around the ‘transport hub’ to justify their planned tower(s). JLP also referenced the unpopular, as yet unbuilt, 22 storey Manor Road tower as a guide for height when questioned about scale. This is in spite of the area being predominantly two story Victorian terraced housing.
STT is urging JLP to listen to public feedback and take on board that over 2700 people objected to the Manor Road towers, including all three local MPs, and that that scheme was turned down by the planning committee and not supported by the GLA.
Other than this, JLP has been unforthcoming with any further details about how many new flats will be built, instead focusing on the John Lewis brand name for quality.
All we know at this stage is they will be demolishing the old supermarket (only 17 years old), building flats across the whole of the current car park, building a new superstore, with street-level customer car parking and a tower block (or blocks) on top.
Behind closed doors?
Before May’s council elections, Peter Mason, Leader of Ealing Council pledged an end to unwanted towers. STT is sure he’s a man of his word, so we hope any plans from JLP will be subject to this pre-election promise.
So it’s important the community speaks out if it doesn’t like these plans.
A consultation will be held this Friday 1st July 4pm-8pm and Saturday 2nd July 10am-2pm at West Ealing library near Sainsburys in Melbourne Avenue W13 9BT. We urge all our supporters to attend the consultation to see what JLP are planning – and give your views.
Justine Sullivan, co-Chair of STT said “We’ve tried to find out more about the development but so far have been stonewalled. So we urge Ealing residents to attend and ask questions about the height and density of the development. We need answers. At the moment we don’t know if it’s 10 or 1000 new flats. No one is saying. And with the application due to go to planning by the end of the year / early 2023, someone needs to get a move on and start sharing images if they are working to that schedule.
“Yet again Ealing Council is on the back foot here. 12 months on from the disastrous Manor Road appeal, the council still hasn’t published its’ five-year housing supply figures (a statutory obligation, for which they’ve been fined). Nor have they published a local plan for what is, or isn’t acceptable to be built. Without these documents or a tall buildings policy (still unpublished), fighting inappropriate development is like a one-legged man trying to win an arse-kicking contest”
For very little information and a questionnaire, please go to: www.WaitroseWestEaling.co.uk. Let John Lewis know what you think of their proposals – even if you don’t know what they are.
Stop The Towers would like to set up a table in front of the library during the exhibition and we are looking for people to staff it. Please email email@example.com to volunteer.
Stop The Towers www.stopthetowers.org
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