Appalling exhibition on the future of the Winstanley/Clapham Junction Station area

3 mins read

Did you support the two 42-storeys towers at Clapham Junction station in 2009? If so you will be very pleased that Wandsworth Council is now pushing for such avision, but with a more ambitious project transforming of the full area into a small Canary Wharf type development!

For others, you will wonder if you should cry or laugh, but you will certainly be flabbergasted by the vision presented by the Winstanley York Road regeneration team.

A deceitful Council: Residents betrayed by the consultation organised in 2013

The latest exhibition shows now the difference between what was presented to the local residents to get their vote in 2013, and what is now strongly suggested.

FACTS: here is a comparison of the board images:

Comparison station proposal 2013/2017 (images from exhibition panels with photo background added)
Comparison York Road and Leisure centre 2013/2017  (images from exhibition panels)
Comparison Central estate 2013/2017  (images from exhibition panels)

In October and November 2013 residents were asked to choose amongst 3 options from a moderate refurbishment of the estate to a full redevelopment (Options consultation). As option 3 was nominated as the preferred option, and despite all objections from the wider area, a deaf Council concentrated only on implementing this option.

Last week, Philip Morris, Project Manager for the regeneration project denied that residents were mislead by the first exhibition in 2013. There is no need for a long explanation here, we will just compare images of exhibition 2013 with the latest October 2017 one [shown above] and you will be able to decide if the initial presentation was a fair representation of the plans.

Initially the Council concentrated on advertising the “more human” scale of the scheme, with images of 3 to 5 storey high buildings located inside the estates.

Initial consultation 2013: Exhibition board

Residents were flabbergasted by the image of the development published in Brightside this week and as plans are moving from bad to worse we can only expect more nasty surprises for the times to come.

CGI published in Brightside in September 2017

Is the Council deaf or patronising?

Current view from York Garden

According to the booklet produced by the project teams-open-day-exhibition-boards in 2013, the number one thing that residents wanted to change was: Improved homes with fewer towers

Winstanley and York Road open day exhibition board – 2013

Here is the response from the Council as presented in October 2017.

Exhibition October 2017: Board called “The Vision”

Therefore, either the Council misunderstood the view expressed by the local residents, or as shown in the more recent consultations, they decided to bulldoze through their own vision, ignoring residents and misrepresenting the local opinion.

From 2013 to 2015 and now 2017 the size of the redevelopment as been in constant increase.

Consultation 2013
Exhibition 2015
Exhibition 2017 (and there is no exaggeration from their poster!)

In terms of density, as the plan is becoming more massive, the number of unitsoffered is increasing. In addition to the current approved developments on York Road, the cumulative effect of all those new buildings is being totally ignored by the Council (refer to our public meeting in 2015).

At the moment, the council has got 530 social rent units in the regeneration area which are earmarked for demolition. The Council is only suggesting to stick to that same amount with a total of affordable units offered (inc. social) of 816, i.e. 36% of the total proposed! [The Council is claiming that there are also approximately 110 social rent units being built by the Council in the Battersea area to assist with first phase decant for the regeneration.]

Tenure Numbers 2017 (Council paper 17-174)

  • Social Rent on W/YR:530
  • Affordable Rent:100
  • Low cost Home Ownership: 100
  • Shared Equity: 86
  • Private Rented Sector: 311
  • Open Market Sale: 1,148

Total 2,275

Project team

The project is led by Wandsworth Council, with a Council master-plan team, working closely with officers. There is absolutely no chance that the Council will know decide to listen to the residents of Clapham Junction area and change their plans for a more respectful project.

This project needs a total rethink!

Therefore there seems to be only one way to stop this madness: think about your vote for the May 2018 local election.

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CJI editor and Clapham Junction Action Group co-founder and coordinator since 2008, Cyril has lived in Clapham Junction since 2001.
He is also funder and CEO of Habilis-Digital Ltd, a digital agency creating and managing websites and Internet solutions.