Green light for 28-storey Southwark scheme that co-locates 250 homes and industrial uses

Plans for a mixed-use scheme that co-locates industrial uses with 250 homes and includes a 28-storey tower have been approved on London's Old Kent Road.

A visualisation of the Old Kent Road scheme. Pic: hgh consulting
A visualisation of the Old Kent Road scheme. Pic: hgh consulting

The London Borough of Southwark's planning committee voted on Monday to give full consent for the plans to redevelop a 0.43 hectare industrial site on Ilderton Road in the Old Kent Road regeneration zone, in line with a recommendation from officers.

A total of 253 new homes will be provided in the scheme, just over a third of which (35.5 per cent) will be affordable.  

The scheme incorporates three blocks, the tallest of which will rise to 28 storeys, 25 of which will contain flats. 

According to the committee report, the scheme’s 58 social rent homes will be contained within a dedicated block which will be physically separated from the other two residential blocks. 

The three residential blocks will sit on top of a two- to three-storey podium, which will house distribution space. 

A total of 2,184 sqm of B8 floor space is earmarked on the ground and intermediate floor levels- an increase on the area currently on the site for industrial uses. 

The site is currently occupied by the headquarters and warehouse of food distribution business Leathams, which is the applicant. 

Officers said the scheme would remove some existing office floor space, but would create affordable workspace in line with the requirements of the emerging Southwark local plan and the draft New London Plans, according to a report by officers, which recommends approval even though the site is currently designated as a strategic industrial location. 

They also said the plan supports London and Southwark plan policies to boots new homes with the proposed affordable housing level described as "very positive". 

The scheme’s 28-storey tower would fit with the cluster of the tall buildings emerging along the Old Kent Road, the report added, while its design was of "the highest quality". 

By "successfully combining" industrial and residential uses, the "exemplary" scheme would make a "significant contribution" to both the council’s housing and jobs targets in what the report describes as one of the borough’s major regeneration areas. 

The draft Old Kent Road Area Action Plan has set a target of 20,000 new homes and 10,000 new jobs along the south London thoroughfare by releasing substantial tracts of land currently designated for industrial uses. 

Leathams is vacating the site, which it has occupied since 1995, because the current on-site facilities can no longer meet its operational requirements, according to the report.

Planning consultancy hgh Consulting submitted the application on behalf of Leatham. 

The consent for the Ildington Road application follows another permission by Southwark Council earlier this month for 800 homes in two nearby high-density developments earlier this month in the Old Kent Road regeneration zone.

Planning article examining what the co-location of industrial and housing uses means for planning can be read here. 


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