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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

The development of the Industrial site by Hornsey Station has been in the offing for a number of years now. 

The initial planning application for a very ugly nine story building was rejected in 2014. The new application sees an additional five stories being added to the building, giving 176 flats in a towering 14 storey building. One of the early objectors to the application as described the planned building as a "mammoth multi-storyed building".

The objector may have a point. Even the developers say that the building's 'zone of visual influence will stretch for over a mile in every direction. (Click the picture for a magnified view)

Rather misleadingly, the developer's brochure still features a rather neat and compact looking nine storey building on its front page.The reality will be more like the picture at the top of this page. 

From reading the application, we learn that:

The Site would be a notable departure from this character type but is compatible with broad policy objectives of delivering a mixed use residential led scheme and optimising potential.

Due to the site’s separate nature and prevailing land use, the height and mass would have no harmful effects on this area. There would be a high degree of change and the proposal would result in a moderate beneficial effect on this part of the townscape.

This area has a low sensitivity to changes to the townscape and is located on the north side of the New River. It is a predominantly residential area characterised by mid-late 20th century buildings of 3-7 storeys which are of no particular architectural merit and have larger footprints than the residential areas dating from the 19th and early 20th centuries.

There that told ya dinnit. Is this just planner clumsiness or has it anything to do with the fact that the whole visual impact assessment is made on the following basis:

The application Site is located within the Wood Green area, but immediately adjoins the Hornsey area.

Just laziness on the part of the consultants who drew up the assessment, or is there anything else to this, I wonder?

I have attached two of the developer's documents below. These show a range of views from Hornsey and a couple from Raleigh and Hampden and Fairland, but no views from elsewhere on the Ladder. Again, I wonder why Harringay's part has been so obviously underplayed.

You can read the voluminous planning application on the Haringey Council website.

You can support or object to the application by submitting comments online using the button on the planning application page.

All comments will be taken into consideration but those made in reference to specific council policies will carry much more weight. To make life easier for you, please take a look at a summary I did of the relevant policies for the previous planning application. You might also link to the reasons that the last application was rejected - linked to above.

All comments must be submitted by 20th June 2016.

Thanks to Charlotte and Quentin for flagging-up this latest application.

Tags for Forum Posts: hampden road, hampden road development

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Thanks for this Hugh.

The following is on the back of the letter we received this week.

Guidance on commenting on planning applications

Planning issues

The Council must decide planning applications in agreement with the Haringey Local Plan, The London Plan, National Guidance and any other material considerations. You can support or object to a planning proposal but the Council can only take into account comments if they relate to planning issues, these are referred to as 'material planning considerations' and include, but are not limited to:

  • Strategic issues such as sufficient land for housing, open space, employment
  • Effect on local amenities, including traffic, parking and road safety
  • Loss of light and privacy of neighbours
  • Noise and disturbance resulting from new uses
  • Effect on vitality and viability of shopping centre
  • Effect of the proposal on the character and appearance of an area

We cannot take into account matters which are sometimes raised but are not normally planning considerations. These include the following examples:

  • Loss of property value
  • Land/boundary disputes or private/civil rights e.g, rights of light, right of access
  • Competition to existing business
  • Personal views about an applicant
  • Loss of a view

Love that photo taken in the dip on the Fairfax Road side of "Fairfield Gardens"

Yes they do seem to be rather selective about where their viewpoints are. The one from the New River over by Eade Road takes care to choose a point where the view is blocked by buildings. But for me the one view that really shows how out of scale this building would be is their view from Ally Pally. Talk about  the "effect of the proposal on the character and appearance of an area". It even dwarfs the New River Village. (Click the picture to enlarge).

The area coped quite happily with the 16 floors of Dylan Thomas House for almost 40 years and this development imo is of superior design.

Seriously it's going to be fine, try and stop making yourselves unhappy about change in the borough and new homes being built! It's going to happen!

Thanks for those words of reassurance.

For those of us who live here, Stuart, there's good change and bad change. Not all change is bad; not all change is good. 

I'm inviting people to make up their own minds and pointing out some disingenuousness on the part of the developers on the way. 

Nice bit of editing FPR, it actually says "characterised by mid-late 20th century buildings of 3-7 storeys which are of no particular architectural merit".

"I'm inviting people to make up their own minds". Maybe less frequent use of "monstrous" "towering" and "mammoth" might be better then Hugh!

Yes, I have shaded the language in this post by the use of towering and I quoted an objector's use of mammoth. I haven't used monstrous in this post; that was in a previous post in the context of the monstrous building proposed in the first application. 

My use of those phrases is quite intentional and serves to balance the disingenuous underplaying of the building's impact by the developers upon whose visualisations we have largely to rely and whose brochures are added unedited. 

Do you think that you or any other reader will be unable to discern the balance from the totality of what's provided?

May I just ask what your present interest is in this, Stuart?

"May I just ask what your present interest is in this"

Can't believe you've missed the ball and gone for the player's shins.

However: I have a housing background, I believe London needs loads of new homes at high densities, I know all of the borough 'very' well, most of my social life is in Hackney, Haringey and Islington. I am a fairly frequent visitor to the area's pubs and restaurants.

As yet, no bungs from Fairview!

I haven't gone for you or any part of you, Stuart and there was absolutely no suggestion whatsoever of any 'bungs'. 

The reason I asked the question is because you took a rather unequivocal position as a non-resident and didn't, to my mind, demonstrate any understanding of the complex issues that might be involved for the people who live here. (It's almost certainly the case that as a housing professional you have a deep understanding of the issues, but you showed none of that in your first comment).

The relationship of an occasional visitor to an area, or indeed of that of an interested professional, is quite different to the one that exists between a resident and the neighbourhood in which they live. For example I might love the velodrome in Stratford, but if you read about the dislocation of communities that occurred in the area as a result of the Olympic Park being built, my own views expressed from a distance need to be put into perspective and viewed as those of an interested onlooker.

I would have been quite entitled to hold and express my views on the Olympic Park, but I might expect to have done so in an empathic manner as an understanding non-resident.

No dislocation is threatened by the building of a residential block on the borders of Harringay and Hornsey, but there are complex considerations which warrant rather more nuance and understanding than I think you showed.

Hugh, many thanks for the neutral factual way you have raised this issue. And for suggesting we are at least sceptical of the publicity brochures of the developers and their various allies and agents. I'm sure many people will be aware of the many techniques used to present their plans and proposals in the best possible light.

Sometimes these are so crude as to be obvious and comic. I once spotted a video produced to extol the benefits of the so-called Hale Village near Tottenham Hale Station, which included a shot of a restaurant near Newington Green in Islington. But other misleading publicity can be more subtle.

As there isn't a trustworthy independent "Which" report available for every new development, it's advisable for concerned local residents to be wary and to pool their views ad knowledge in an attempt to arrive at some balanced judgement.

Especially since -in my view at least - our elected local council and councillors appears to have in some instances, largely abandoned the attempt to be scrupulously balanced and even-handed about the risks and concerns as well as the need for new homes for people to live in.

On the risk of some homes becoming mainly investment opportunities and relatively safe assets for 'non-doms' they appear to be silent.

I think we're all entitled to ask if people commenting on a planning application have some financial or other interest; or some particular professional experience or background on which they are basing their judgements or opinions.

I have no knowledge of Mr Matheson's "housing background"; have no idea where he lives; and entirely accept his assurance about the lack of any financial connection with developers and their agents. Obviously he is fully entitled to express any opinion he wishes about any street anywhere.

My own scepticism is mainly focussed on people who - in my observation - seem keen on monstrous towers and over-development in places a long way from their own homes and streets and neighbourhoods. They appear to be doing unto others' homes and estates and streets what they would not wish done unto them.

52 parking spaces?. -  This won't go down well with the 'North Harringay Republic',  besides you wont be able to get cars into the site once they've blocked and pedestrianised that end Wightman Road.

Just being flipant folks!!

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