Press release from the
“Coalition for a Sustainable Brent Cross Cricklewood Development”
17 Jan 2012: for immediate release
|link to Evening Standard|
The campaign welcomes the collapse of the grotesque, car-based Brent Cross scheme.
However, it is totally unacceptable to still go ahead with the easy-profit shopping centre expansion, which we are told is a “possibility”.
We demand the whole plan is scrapped, and the arrogant local developers, and their ineffective PR company, are removed from the project.
Measures in new Localism Act mean that over-bearing property companies, in alliance with conceited Barnet Council, cannot get away with “business as usual”. This is a great day for people-power – not Hammerson plc and not Mike Freer (former Barnet leader, now MP).
We want development based on people’s aspirations for a sustainable, low-carbon, exciting regeneration of the area. This means starting from scratch, and will also obviously have to wait for improvements in the economy.
The developers have wasted many years – not ONE home has been built, not ONE transport improvement. Barnet Council has also wasted many hours of work in promoting something nobody wanted - their web site still estimates 29,000 extra cars every day in the Brent Cross area, which would cause traffic misery.
The developers have just received planning permission for a small building at Brent Cross – but have resorted to making the application from a tax haven in the Channel Islands. They have no shame, and are behaving no better than bankers.
Lia Colacicco, Co-ordinator of the Brent Cross Coalition, said:
“The regeneration was always a mirage, despite the PR spin, the developers were only ever committed to building a few hundred new housing units anyway. In return for cheaply purchasing large swathes of public land, their main return to the local population would have been gridlocked traffic. I hope the next deal is more transparent, and involves a stretch of light rail to link to local tube lines.”
Alison Hopkins, Dollis Hill resident, said:
“What we are being offered now is little different from the rejected shopping centre planning application of 13 years ago. We will still get lots of extra traffic, but no transport improvements. The developers want to “pick the low-hanging fruit” of what pays out quick profits. The Brent Cross Waste Incinerator seems to be a dead project now, but we will continue to campaign, to make absolutely sure.”
David Howard, Chair of the Federation of Residents Associations of Barnet, said:
“The Brent Cross Cricklewood development would have had a negative impact on the infrastructure and the environment of much of North London and for generations to come. Brian Coleman cannot quote my phrase of “hobbit homes”, since he has done nothing to stop the scheme, and we have. We need the public land at Brent Cross to be kept out of the hands of the developers, and corridors across it reserved for a future light railway to Brent Cross Northern Line station, and to other local areas.”