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Labour hits back at Tory Boris over Canary Wharf's Columbus Tower

PUBLISHED: 19:18 28 August 2009 | UPDATED: 14:47 05 October 2010

Battle for Columbus Tower hots up

Battle for Columbus Tower hots up

THE London Assembly member representing Canary Wharf has hit back at Mayor Boris Johnson for over-ruling the local authority which threw out plans for a new skyscraper. Labour’s John Biggs accused the Tory mayor of being “all over the place” and breaking promises

By Mike Brooke

THE London Assembly member representing Canary Wharf has hit back at Mayor Boris Johnson for over-ruling the local authority which threw out plans for a new skyscraper.

Labour's John Biggs, whose City & East London constituency includes the waterfront business district, accused the Tory mayor of being "all over the place" and breaking promises.

His attack follows this-morning's news that Boris was overruling Tower Hamlets Council which rejected the controversial Columbus Tower development on August 4.

"Boris wants to stop tall buildings yet he is giving them the okay," said Biggs.

"He is all over the place on this. He promises to give local people more of a say, but here he is intervening to overrule a local decision.

"The Mayor should respect a decision on what was right for the area, not intervene where no intervention is necessary."

The Mayor is using new planning powers to 'call in' the decision to reject the 63-storey tower for West India Quay, which would include a 192-room hotel and more than 70 flats.

Biggs added: "Whatever people thought of Ken Livingstone's support for tall buildings, at least they knew where he stood.

"Boris should make up his mind where he stands and save the flip-flops for his holidays."

The Columbus Tower scheme could help fund Crossrail, Boris said in his statement from City Hall earlier today.

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