13 Sep 2019

The 9 projects set to change the face of Westminster over the next few years

The 9 projects set to change the face of Westminster over the next few years

With so many cranes filling the capital's skyline, you could be forgiven for assuming that more building work is going on than ever.

So here is a round-up of all the major developments coming to the borough of'Westminster, encompassing the West End, and Zone-1 neighbourhoods of'Paddington, Pimlico, Queensway and Marylebone.

The 'Paddington Cube'

The highly-controversial idea from the creator of the Shard won planning permission in 2016, with small amendments added in November last year.

It will consist of 17 storeys of glass-walled office space for 400 workers, and cost developer and architect Renzo Piano a cool '825 million to build.

A new Bakerloo Line entrance will be included in the scheme, owing to its close proximity to Paddington station.

It drew objections from local residents groups, as well as NHS chiefs at St Mary's Hospital, who said the plans would remove an ambulance bay. However a later amendment saw the bay restored.

Historic Queensway pub will make way for 'Park Modern' luxury flats

Last month, more than 1,500 people signed a petition calling for the Black Lion pub outside Queensway station to be saved from demolition.

In place of the centuries-old boozer, Fenton Whelan will soon build 55 luxury flats offering views over Kensington Gardens.

The so-called Park Modern development, will be worth '450 million, and include a restaurant, spa, gym and swimming pool underground.

Planning permission was given in 2016, after objections from the Campaign for Real Ale, the Victorian Society, Historic England, and Kensington and Chelsea Council.

Cundy Street residents' right to return

Plans by Grosvenor to redevelop an exclusive estate in Cundy Street, Belgravia, have been taking shape since 2012.

The idea was to take four post war blocks of privately-owned flats and replace them with bigger, more modern builds.

However, last week saw a long-running battle between Grosvenor and 40 social-rent households in Walden House, managed by Westminster Council, come to an end.

Ebury Bridge estate

Thirteen red-brick mansion blocks on Pimlico's Ebury Bridge estate are awaiting the bulldozers.

Westminster Council plans to replace the 1930s buildings with 750 new homes, including 343 to be let at 'affordable' rents.

The council has said that by autumn, it will announce a construction company to begin phase one of the estate's regeneration.

It was reported in April that the council had begun advertising for a company to demolish phase one, which is reported to be all but empty.

Last year, the council redrafted its plans to regenerate the Ebury after a backlash from residents, and its failure to find a development partner.

West London's biggest skyscraper coming to Paddington

The tallest skyscraper in West London is set to be built in Paddington's Merchant Square estate, with a cylindrical shape not dissimilar to the Gherkin.

European Land won planning permission in April for the 42-storey tower of 271 flats, despite councillors' frustration about a lack of affordable housing.

A basement cinema and sky garden will also be included. And another 21-storey tower will be built next door, containing 155 flats.

Blueprints show the 490 ft-tall tower will be covered in 'dark blue glazed terracotta cladding', with a crown of tusks on its roof.

The Merchant Square estate also includes four more new-builds, including three that were recently completed.

Carnaby Street shops and offices

A new '32 million shopping, leisure and office complex will be built in the Carnaby Street district after developer Shaftesbury was given the green light in June.

Completion is expected in 2021 and it will replace an ageing concrete power station.

Shaftesbury hopes it will breathe new life into Carnaby's designer outlet-lined alleys that once lured mods, hippies and skiffle lovers.

Oxford Street offices and the West End's first rooftop cafe

On August 8, Westminster Council rubber stamped BCP Capital's plans to build an eight-storey office block at the east end of Oxford Street.

The main attraction will be its rooftop garden and cafe, offering views over Soho Square, Tottenham Court Road and Oxford Street.

The developer also pledged that Soho residents would be given priority entry to the garden.

Demolition of the existing buildings could begin in summer 2020, with completion by early 2023.

The Church Street Masterplan

The long-touted regeneration of Marylebone's historic Church Street area took a step forward over the summer.

Some 1,700 new homes are included in the blueprints, with half promised as 'affordable' housing.

  • An 'improved street market' with up to 220 stalls, 150 van-parking spaces and 3,600msq of storage facilities
  • A new 'cultural quarter' centred around the antiques market and the Cockpit Theatre
  • A new centre for 'affordable and flexible' workspace

Planning permission was given in March to build 168 new homes in Luton Street, including 59 affordable homes. Construction work by Bouygues UK Ltd began on August 12.

In June, the council announced that residents had shown 'clear support' to develop 1,167 new homes on three sites along Church Street. 622 of those new homes will be affordable, the council said.

127-143 Oxford Street to become new shops, offices and nightclub

A '300 million scheme to revamp the heart of Oxford Street and create 30,000 sq ft of retail space was waived through by Westminster in January.

Investment firm Daejan Investments will demolish 127-143 Oxford Street.

New office space totalling 60,000 sq ft, and a new nightclub will also be built.

Source: MyLondon


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