On 15 June, representatives from PRERA met with the Lambeth Council’s new Cabinet Member for Housing – Cllr Paul Gadsby. Also present were our local councillor Liz Atkins and several senior officers responsible for the council’s housing stock. At the meeting we discussed four key areas:
We felt that the meeting was a significant milestone in our campaign to get a better service from the council in these areas. Signs of progress include:
An acknowledgement from the council that Palace Road Estate has not been receiving the service it should from housing management.
A restructuring of the housing management service next month, with reallocation of housing officers to estates.
A written description of the service that we should expect from estate housing officers.
Recent surveys of the structural condition of the blocks of flats. This will inform future prioritisation of works across Lambeth.
The scheduling of an inspection of the estate by the incoming manager responsible for housing across the whole of Lambeth [carried out on 22 June].
A commitment that leaseholders would not be charged [directly] for work to rectify problems with the poorly constructed cladding for the water pipes that were installed in 2013.
An acknowledgment that water distribution around the site is failing and needs replacement. This was proposed to be included in the 2019/20 capital works programme.
A commitment to develop a policy for bulky waste disposal on council estates.
Prioritisation of Palace Road Estate in the placement of the council’s stock of mobile CCTV cameras (after Tulse Hill Estate), to deter fly-tipping.
Support from Cllr Gadsby for residents to have access to the community space within the new resource centre on Coburg Crescent.
An acknowledgement that the council needs to better engage with PRERA in future.
A contractor has now been appointed for the building of the new resource centre – Farrans. They were due to start work this month, but, we are told, unexpected adverse ground conditions have been discovered, which will delay the start. The plan is to do more soil testing this week, followed by a couple months work on any changes required to the building design. More details can be found in this letter.
The committee will continue to monitor developments and pass on information through this blog.
The Planning Application Committee meeting relating to the new Resource Centre on Coburg Crescent takes place this coming Tuesday, 23rd January. Details of the meeting can be found here. Both our chair, Rob, and our local Councillor, Liz Atkins, will be speaking at the meeting. They will be requesting that the community space within the new building is available for the use of PRERA, free of charge. This would be partial compensation for the destruction of our tenants’ hall.
If anyone can spare the time to come along to the meeting to support Rob and Liz, that would be much appreciated and may improve the chances of succes.
We have just received confirmation that our local MP Chuka Umunna will be visiting the estate this Friday. He is coming to meet residents of the estate to find out about our concerns. Representatives of the PRERA committee will be there, but all residents are welcome, so do come along. We will be walking around the estate, starting at the childrens’ play area at 2pm.
Following a query to the planning department, notices of the planning application for the new building on Coburg Crescent have now been posted on site. This has extended the deadline for comments on the application until the 11th October. To make comments, visit the planning website here or email email@example.com, quoting 17/03981/RG3.
A planning application has finally been filed for the new building on Coburg Crescent. It can be viewed on the council’s planning website here. The closing date for comments or objections is Friday 22nd September 2017.
The existing demolition site is 3, 5 and 7 Coburg Crescent, but the application also includes 8, 9, 10 and 11 Coburg Crescent – the shop and adjoining flats. There is a replacement shop in the new building, but, as the application stands, the estate will have no shop during the construction. The application mentions the possibility of a temporary shop, but states that the provision of such a shop will need to be the subject of another planning application.
Have you noticed banging noises coming from the building site on Coburg Crescent recently? This was the sound of soil samples being collected for testing, in preparation for the construction of the new building.
We hope to get an update on progress with the planning application at our AGM on 19th September, so do come along! In the meantime, we have been assured that the much-graffitied hoarding will be smartened up. Watch this space…
On 4th May there was another public meeting about the new building on Coburg Crescent. As usual, this took place at Laburnum Hall on the Cheshire Estate. The meeting was hosted by Fiona Connolly – Lambeth’s Director of Adult Social Care – and representatives from C.F. Møller Architects. Notes on this meeting and two meetings held earlier in the day can be downloaded here.
On 26th January 2017, a meeting was held at Laburnum Hall regarding the proposed “Learning Disability Resource Hub” development on Coburg Crescent. The meeting was chaired by Fiona Connolly (Director of Adult Social Care, Lambeth Council) and it was attended by Lambeth Council staff involved in the project, the architect, local councillors and local residents.
The meeting was informative. However, letters notifying Palace Road Estate residents of the meeting had only been posted through letterboxes the previous day and only a handful of residents attended. Residents and councillors emphasised to the council during the meeting that there must be plenty of notice of future meetings.
This blog post provides a summary of the key points from the meeting. Further information is contained in the handouts provided by Lambeth Council and the architect’s firm (C.F. Møller). Minutes of the meeting are being produced by Lambeth Council and will be added to the blog in due course.
What’s going to be in the new development?
The development will be on the site of the former buildings at 3, 5 and 7 Coburg Crescent which were demolished last year. It is proposed that it will comprise:
A day centre for adults with learning disabilities
Homes (short- and long-term stay) for 13 people with a disability. There is no longer a plan to build private flats as part of the development
Accommodation for carers
“Flexible space”, managed by the Learning Disability service, which can be made available for community use
A cafe to provide snacks and meals to service users and at times for the local community.
A new shop will also be built on the site. The council have stated that it is a priority to keep some kind of continuous shop facility open throughout the construction process.
What are the timeframes?
The development is subject to planning permission and the council propose to submit the planning application in late May/early June 2017. The council stated that there would be consultation with residents on the detail of the design before submission. Construction is planned to commence in winter 2017 with the building opening for use in spring 2019.
Comments from residents and councillors
The following points were raised by residents and councillors during the meeting:
The need for a shop to be available continuously
The need for the community space to be available free of charge for PRERA use
The need for plenty of notice of the consultation on the planning application and future meetings
The Residents’ Association would wish to review the traffic management plans for the construction. Also, contractors should not be allowed to park on Palace Road Estate
The need for a named person to contact on the council if there are any problems. Fiona Connolly confirmed that this was to be her (firstname.lastname@example.org 0207 926 1702)