|Surrounding Communities Unimpressed by Lionel Road Development|
A "development that would be harshly and permanently detrimental to its neighbours"
The following statement has been issued by amenity groups and residents' associations listed below:
The reasons why the Club wishes to move to Lionel Road are fully appreciated. While we will be raising important issues concerning the stadium itself and its use, this statement relates to the proposed enabling development and is a preliminary view, based on known details to date. Each association will respond individually once the planning application is lodged.
The desire to fund the building of the stadium from enabling development has led to proposals for residential development on the three corners of the site and adjoining land that are totally inappropriate in scale and design. Cross financing the construction of the stadium in this way apparently requires the building of nearly 1000 flats in high-rise blocks on the small parcels of land surrounding the stadium. We do not believe that the implications for the local infrastructure and environment are acceptable and we question whether they have been adequately considered.
With the other schemes that have been given consent but which are recently or not yet occupied, the population of Brentford would be increased by some 40%. Already Brentford is under-provided with schools and open spaces, the provision of health centres or homes for the elderly, and the town cannot sustain more housing without the support facilities necessary for a sustainable and balanced community. Development on the scale proposed would be seriously detrimental to the quality of life within the surrounding residential areas and the new development itself.
While the Lionel Road site itself is industrial, it is in a very sensitive location being surrounded not only by established residential communities but also by architectural and natural heritage assets of local, regional, national and international significance. These include several Conservation Areas, the Steam Museum, Gunnersbury Park, the River Thames and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. The negative impacts on these assets and their settings would be severe and multiple and would include visual impact, light, noise and air pollution and access.
In view of the sensitivity of the location, any buildings should be of varying heights, with none taller than 21 metres (7 storeys), which is the height of recently-approved housing by St James’s/Thames Water adjacent to the Steam Museum, and is the average height of the Kew Bridge development, which was itself extensively discussed and debated when permission for that development was sought. All buildings should be of a high architectural quality.
In conclusion, a relocation of the Club must not be the justification for development that would be harshly and permanently detrimental to its neighbours. We ask that the BFC reconsider its proposals so that any enabling development is appropriate for its location and consistent with the needs of the community.
Brentford Community Council
April 10, 2013