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The Little Venice skyline has already been ruined

02 March, 2018

‘the skyline view over Little Venice has been ruined’

• IT is all very well Cllr Daniel Astaire talking about “…growth needn’t necessarily mean tall buildings” (‘Taller buildings’ debate heats up, February 23)but he neglects the reality of Dudley Tower and Brunel Buildings in Paddington Basin going up right now and ruining the skyline view over Little Venice.

What is visible now is only the lift works and this is only a fraction of what will be built with a bland semi-industrial aesthetic cladding, approved as a “non-material alteration” under delegated powers.

So both these towers are not just big but they’re ugly as well. When planning permission was given for the Brunel Building, condition five referred to the visual impact.

Yet when it was submitted very little could be ascertained from certainly the elevation drawings. Furthermore the view analysis of Dudley Tower when planning was granted does not do justice to its actual visual impact on Little Venice pool, particularly when it was turned from a seven-storey to a 22-storey building.

Little Venice residents were not consulted since they live outside the ward boundary, but suffer the impact on their visual amenity. So Cllr Daniel Astaire, who is to blame for the skyline of Little Venice being ruined?

A Labour administration at Westminster City Hall after May 3 will make sure:

• Residents have the right to speak at planning committee meetings to present their case. Westminster Council is virtually alone among local authorities in preventing their residents from doing so.

• A “design panel for Westminster” is set up to allow architects, conservationists and other experts – and interested residents – to give external advice to planning committees on design aspects of major planning proposals.

• A new strategic projects planning committee is established with a larger than normal membership to prevent major applications being dominated by the whims of over-powerful individual councillors.

If residents want a decisive change in planning in our city, only voting Labour on May 3 will make a difference.

Labour candidates for Little Venice ward


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