Abbey Area application passed by Camden

Three local planning applications were on the agenda for Thursday’s Development Control committee meeting (Where Camden councillors vote on large planning applications).

The major decision to be made was regarding the Abbey Area development. This a proposal by Camden council itself, so naturally planning officers were recommending approval. The full 171 page report is here (sorry, not annotated this one!). There was a lengthy discussion in the meeting about this, with some strong views concerning the mix of housing in the new proposal as well as the impact of another large-scale development. Kilburn ward councillor Mike Katz perhaps captured the challenges of the plan most eloquently, pointing out that although the plans might not be perfect, “The best is often the enemy of the good and there’s much good about this development” He went on to address one of the criticisms head on: “I rather take objection that by trying to address our housing needs in NW London that you create a ghetto.”

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Eventually the vote was unanimously in favour, with two abstentions (Cllrs Rea & Braithwaite). There was no news of what might happen to the businesses that will see their premises destroyed – both under Emminster (Oscar’s Den, the piano shop, the pub), and in the car park (the framers, the upholsterers etc.). The entire webcast of the discussion can be viewed here.