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Call to comment on Bishopsgate Goodsyard scheme as consultation end date looms

PUBLISHED: 17:00 04 September 2020 | UPDATED: 08:58 07 September 2020

A public consultation on revised plans for Bishopsgate Goodsyard is due to end soon. The image shows the current scheme.  Picture: Bishopsgate Goodsyard

A public consultation on revised plans for Bishopsgate Goodsyard is due to end soon. The image shows the current scheme. Picture: Bishopsgate Goodsyard

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People are being urged to respond to revised plans for the Bishopsgate Goodsyard scheme before the deadline runs out in a few days’ time.

The Bishopsgate Goodsyard from the eastern end of the site and showing the planned park. Picture: HAMMERSON/BALLYMOREThe Bishopsgate Goodsyard from the eastern end of the site and showing the planned park. Picture: HAMMERSON/BALLYMORE

The proposals from developers Hammerson and Ballymore for the derelict site in Shoreditch were submitted to the Greater London Authority last year with the public consultation expected to end on September 7.

Jonathan Moberly, founder of the Reclaim the Goodsyard campaign, said City Hall’s planning officers need to know what people think of the scheme, but won’t unless people tell them.

“It’s incredibly valuable to express in your own words what you feel about the proposals,” he added.

He explained that awareness of the proposed scheme and the looming deadline may not be widespread because the decision whether to approve or reject it is out of local authority hands.

A blaze destroyed the 11 acre Bishopsgate Goodsyard terminal in December, 1964, killing two customs officers. Picture: Bob Wilkinson/LFB archiveA blaze destroyed the 11 acre Bishopsgate Goodsyard terminal in December, 1964, killing two customs officers. Picture: Bob Wilkinson/LFB archive

Campaigners criticise the plans for not solving the East End’s housing problems or benefitting communities.

Mr Moberly said that “tinkering at the edges” of a scheme which was “universally rejected” in 2016 meant it was still unacceptable.

“The site has been in the developers hands since 2002 yet they have failed to produce a scheme that has public support,” he said.

Critics want the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to reject the bid and allow “better” developments for Shoreditch, Spitalfields, Brick Lane and Bethnal Green.

A spokesperson for Hammerson and Ballymore denied the revised plan tinkers at the edges, saying: “We believe our plans now provide a considered scheme of the highest quality that will transform this derelict site into an exciting development that provides real opportunities and benefits for Shoreditch and for London.”

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He added the developers have been working with the community since 2011 on their proposals, speaking to more than 2,500 people.

“Thanks to the significant feedback received, our masterplan has evolved considerably over time,” he said.

The Goodsyard site has been derelict since a fire tore through the Goodsyard Station building in 1964. First opened in 1840 as a passenger terminal, the station closed in 1875 before becoming a freight hub six years later.

The developers bought the site from Railtrack in 2002.

A proposal to redevelop the site, to include 1,464 homes, was submitted to town halls in Hackney and Tower Hamlets in 2014.

The number of dwellings dropped to 1,356 in 2015. Then mayor of London, Boris Johnson, called in the plans, giving himself the power to approve or reject the bid.

In April, 2016, a GLA report recommended refusing permission, but the mayor deferred the decision to let the developers amend the plans.

The latest bid submitted in October include reduced building heights, 50 per cent “affordable” housing on up to 500 homes, Oriel Gate’s restoration and the listed Braithwaite Viaduct being opened up to the public.

An elevated park would also be a “fantastic benefit” to Shoreditch, the developers’ spokesperson said.

To comment visit the Bishopsgate Goodsyard consultation webpage.

Campaigners are encouraging people to copy in borough mayors to emailed responses.


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