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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

I was away for a while at the start of this year and came back to find the Colina Shaft building badly defaced with graffiti.

I sent the following email to our local councillors and to Joanne McCartney, our member in the London Assembly (Joanne.McCartney@london.gov.uk):

If you haven’t seen it yourself, has anyone pointed out the dire state of the Transport for London Colina Road Shaft Building following an awful graffiti attack whilst I was away in Jan - Mar?

Even before the graffiti, it was sorely in need of some attention. The building apparently retains most of its original coloured glass windows and all of its Charles Holden moderne styling.

Zena and Anna, could you please let me know how much Section 106 and CiL money the Evergreen development next door attracted, what it was earmarked for and if any was associated with the shaft building? (Or do I need to FOI that?)

Do any of you know any levers that can be pulled to at least deal with the graffiti? I imagine it’s TfL responsibility.

I've yet to hear back from our councillors, but I was pleased to hear today, the following from Joanne McCartney's office:

this has been added to the TfL works programme, however, they don’t yet have a date for when this will be completed.

Joanne will continue to ask for updates on this and I will let you know as soon as a date is confirmed.

So, it sounds like we're a long way off, but, touch wood, on the right road.

Tags for Forum Posts: colina road shaft building, graffiti

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It's as good as any Banksy! Let it stay.

Well done for writing, Hugh.  Casting pearls before swine though.

Thanks Hugh - and agreed, an eyesore and bound to get worse as it "screams" no one in the council cares

Do we know why the boards are still up? It feels like they make the area feel more ‘derelict’ and encourage anti-social behaviour like graffiti. 

Lets get some artists together and create some murals! 

Murals? That would be a shame. Isn't that akin to reaching for the woodchip? 

Holden's station architecture is rightly celebrated and a high proportion of his works are listed, including Turnpike Lane, Wood Green and Bounds Green. By the late 20th century most of his buildings had become dirty, uncared for and largely neglected by the public at large. Because it is not in public use, the Colina Road building has never escaped that trap. 

I'm not advocating the shaft building as a masterpiece, but it a satisfying example of moderne styling otherwise absent in Harringay. It would scrub up well. A little care might allow people to start appreciating it.

Was this the area that was originally in the plan by Latimer Homes as a small public square with seating?

Good question. From what I could find out, the area in front of the building is leased to the developer and forms part of the site with the new flats. Termed "Pocket Space" in the planning application (HGY/2016/1807) blurb, it was described to whet the appetite of the Council as follows,

"..we are proposing to create a 'Pocket Space' on the corner of Green Lanes and Colina Mews. This space will be partly used for a few parking spaces allocated to the NHS facility, but the rest of the space during the week and the entire space at weekends could be used for a community led activity such as a pop-up cafe."

Land use drawing from 2016 planning application HGY/2016/1807

No one really seems to have given the building much consideration, including every one of us, the community. Even TfL's submission spoke only to public travel issues related to the development and failed completely to mention the building.

The only mention I could find of the building itself  was in the caption to one of the drawings where it said, "Temporary or permanent art works could potentially decorate TfL ventilation shaft.". So, perhaps it was the developer has taken matters into his own hands and arranged for the graffiti artist to attend!

The blurb also included a photo of the building pre-graffiti which I've inserted below having digitally cleaned (but not otherwise altered) the windows.

Colina Road Shaft building with digitally cleaned, but otherwise unenhanced windows

It would be wonderful if they fulfilled their promise. At the moment there’s nowhere on GL between Ducketts Common and Finsbury Park to get away from traffic apart from Railway Fields.

I always think of this building as representing the lost opportunity to build a Harringay Ladder station on the Piccadilly Line.  If one end of the platforms were near this shaft, the other end would be near the Salisbury.

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