New Octopus Plan Provokes Local Anger

Developer wants the advertising screens up for forty years

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The controversy over the illuminated advertising screens at the Octopus development near Chiswick Roundabout is set to continue. A local residents' group is objecting to an application by the developer for advertising screens to be installed and left in place for forty years.

Members of the West Chiswick and Gunnersbury Society say the normal period for review of this type of advertising screen is five years. Local councillors have issued a ‘call in’ to debate the issue at the next meeting of the Chiswick Area Forum.

The application was lodged on 5th September by Mr. Kim Gottlieb.

Conditions of the current planning permission require the submission of a Lighting Management Plan and an assessment of the impacts of the media screens and LED shroud.

A statement from the WCGS said :

“The West Chiswick and Gunnersbury Society objected to the application to extend the consent for the media screens on the Octopus from 5 to 40 years. We consider that the nature, size and location of these media screens is such that a thorough review of their operation and impact on the surrounding area should be carried out at the end of the normal five year period , before any decision is made as to their continued use."

The controversial ' Octopus' development near Gunnersbury Avenue was given the go-ahead by local councillors last October following revised plans submitted by the developer. It was decided that the scheme, which includes an iconic LED 'shroud' around a large office and retail development would be allowed, subject to stringent conditions relating to advertising, lighting, and job creation. The scheme is expected to provide 300 jobs on the site near Gunnersbury avenue.

An earlier design was refused permission by Hounslow’s Planning Committee in March 2010. One objection was considered to be the impact of the advertising space on highway safety, especially on the M4 motorway. A public enquiry was held into this issue which resulted in a judgment in favour of London & Bath Estates, with the Inspector concluding that there was no adverse impact on highway safety.

The scheme, designed by architects MAKE, provides 4,800 square meters (52,000 square feet) of office space, a retail showroom at ground level, new landscaping, a rooftop public viewing gallery and an LED shroud around the building.

October 27, 2012