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CABE ignored as Woods Bagot get go-ahead in Kensington - images

Woods Bagot has been given the thumbs-up for this 27-storey tower in west London - even though CABE said the scheme should be 'fundamentally rethought'.

Last week's official endorsement by Kensington and Chelsea's Council's major planning development committee for the residential-led scheme in West Cromwell Road comes less than two months after CABE publicly slammed the project.

In its report, dated 15 December, the commission's design review panel said the 400-home development for Multiplex and Tesco was not of 'sufficiently high quality' and they could not support the planning application.

There were also concerns about the 'plunging neckline' profile as well as the external spaces around the £200 million scheme on the key gateway plot.

However, Woods Bagot's managing partner Stephan Reinke has hit back at CABE saying the dialogue with the design review panel had not been sufficiently in-depth.

He said: 'We thought the level of engagement from CABE was fairly superficial. I have to say we were disappointed not to have worked more closely with them.

'We really don't feel like we had an opportunity to engage with the panel in as rigorous as a discussion as we would like to have had.'

He added: 'CABE criticised the scheme by referring to its guidance on tall buildings. However, I think this is unmistakably a site which ticks all the boxes for a tall building and is a bloody important piece of London.'

by Richard Waite

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