The Curve Application Currently 'On Hold'

Discussions continue between developers and Council but scheme 'has not gone away'


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Over 200 people attended a public meeting on Wednesday night at St Michael and All Angels Church which heard that the current application for the 32-storey Chiswick Curve is currently on hold. Discussions are continuing between the developers and Hounslow Council on the planning application.

Leader of the Council Steve Curran said that Hounslow Council is looking at the whole of the Golden Mile and Chiswick roundabout area (Great West Corridor Plan) and that the Chiswick Curve site cannot be considered in isolation.

The meeting was held to discuss the planning application for the Curve, but also the wider problems of air pollution in London and the dramatic change to London's skyline, both actual and future. You can see lots of pictures of how the Curve would look from various parts of Chiswick.

View from Gunnersbury of the Curve

Leader of the Council, Cllr Steve Curran appeared at the meeting just in time to confirm Ruth Cadbury MP's assertion that the application has been put on hold. Cllr Curran said that they are looking at the whole of the Golden Mile and Chiswick roundabout area (see Great West Corridor Plan) and that the Chiswick Curve site cannot be considered in isolation.

Cllr Curran also said, in response to comments from the audience, that he personally doesn't build the towers or give permission for them. There is a due process which is followed.

Cllr Adrian Lee sought and got confirmation that negotiations are ongoing between the council and the developers. In other words, the application may be on hold but discussions aren't.

There was considerable jeering from the audience at various politicians who tried to turn the opportunity into what some saw as a party political broadcast.

Tony Arbour, Conservative Member of London Assembly for the South West suggested that it is up to Hounslow borough to take a strong stand against overdevelopment.

Ruth Cadbury, Labour MP said the Chiswick Curve represented "the most amazing overdevelopment of any site I have ever seen".

An imagined view of the proposed 32-storey Chiswick Curve from Strand on the Green

A projected view of the Curve, from Strand on the Green

The meeting started off with Andrea Lea from ClientEarth talking about the Healthy Air Campaign, focusing on the pollution in London. The long term consequences to health are considerable. For example, studies in east London show that children's lungs develop smaller than elsewhere in the country. Air quality plans for London will not comply with legal limits until after 2030. Clean Air in London is also part of the campaign and has useful resources.

Barbara Weiss, architect and co-founder of the Skyline Campaign was the second speaker who talked about the proliferation of tall towers in London, now with 436 tall buildings (over 20 storeys) on their way. Barbara said that these tall towers do nothing to relieve the housing crisis as they are not affordable for Londoners. The housing crisis can be dealt with by filling and replacing brownfield sites and underused sites in London.

After the meeting, the chair of the West Chiswick & Gunnersbury Society (WCGS), Marie Rabouhans said: The Curve is "on hold" - it has not gone away. It is a foretaste of the Council regenerators' ambitions for the Great West Corridor. If we are not to be faced with large parts of the surrounding residential communities of Brentford and Chiswick being engulfed within the regeneration corridor, we need to make our voices heard by decision-makers at all levels, including our Council and the new Mayor."

April 28, 2016

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