Plans For Golden Mile 'Not Good' For Chiswick

Local group worried about impact of housing at Kew Gate


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A Chiswick residents' association has warned that Hounslow Council's plans for a huge housing development known as Kew Gate, and the regeneration of the 'Golden Mile' will have a major impact on W4.

The Council revealed plans this week to "bring back the glory days of the Golden Mile" with a massive scheme which it said would create nearly 30,000 jobs, and 1,500 new homes, of which almost half would be affordable. The title refers to a stretch of the Great West Road north of Brentford running west from the western boundary of Chiswick. You can see an article about the proposed development on our web site here.

An aerial visualisation of Kew Gate

Included within the plan are over 1500 homes, a new primary school (Floreat has permission although a site is not confirmed), the potential for a new secondary school (HiP has applied) and a huge mix of commercial, light industrial business space.

Plans for the Octopus are replaced with a 42 storey Gateway Tower comprising offices, hotel and residential flats.

But Marie Rabouhans, chair of the West Chiswick and Gunnersbury Society said it would be almost impossible to absorb such a huge development and have a quality of life for residents living in west Chiswick. She said people in W4 needed to be aware that this would take place right on their doorstep.

"We've already had the whole issue of the Brentford Football Stadium and the enabling development and now it seems as if the Council is using that as a catalyst for even more development, particularly this new Kew Gate housing plan, which is excessive. I'm not saying there shouldn't be any development of the Golden Mile, but this is a sensitive area and in our view won't be able to cope with the pressure on infrastructure, transport etc."

While Council leader Steve Curran said that transport links would be improved with a brand new station near Sky’s HQ by using an under-used freight line and the creation of a new Golden Mile station linked to Southall, which will be on Crossrail, Mrs. Rabouhans said that improving transport links would take a long time.

She said it would be difficult for people to have any quality of life in the conservation area between Chiswick Park and the Chiswick roundabout where major developments are also in the pipeline for the Octopus and potentially B&Q.

The proposals along the route - dubbed the Golden Mile, which is home to major companies such as Glaxo Smith Kline and JC Decaux – include ambitious developments in the area, known as Kew Gate in the east, Brentford Lock North, and Blue Sky around the emerging BSkyB campus.

Leader of Hounslow Council, Cllr Steve Curran, said: “The route, which is on the doorstep of Europe’s busiest airport and a few miles from central London is brimming with opportunities for serious, international developers and investors.”

Cllr Curran said the Mayor of London and the Government can also play its part in helping unlock the Golden Mile’s potential. This section of the Great West Road was opened in 1925 in order to bypass the notoriously congested Brentford High Street and several factories of architectural merit were rapidly built along the road too. Many examples of the Art Deco architecture remain such as the JC Decaux building.

October 15 , 2014

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