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Boris delays decision on Allies and Morrison's Elephant scheme

Boris Johnson has failed to make a decision on the fate of Allies and Morrison’s 41-storey tower Eileen House scheme in Elephant & Castle, south London

At a special hearing at his London HQ earlier this week, the mayor instead opted to postpone the final decision until the 19 December.

In a three-hour session Johnson heard from the developer Oakmayne, local residents and representitives of the nearby Ministry of Sound (MoS) club which has always objected to the new tower.

At the hearing the MoS chief executive Lohan Presencer said the club would back the scheme if residents signed a ‘deed of easement’ which would in effect forbid them from complaining about noise generated by the club.

The MoS also want to ensure the proposed building, which features winter gardens to act as a noise ‘buffer’, is built as set out in the planning conditions and that further alterations would meet these soundproofing standards.

The mayor, who at one stage, and much to the delight of the assembly, corrected planning lawyer Tim Taylor’s Latin, said he supported both sides of the argument and requested the month long hiatus to better understand the legal implicatinos of the proposed ‘deed of easement’.

Johnson summed up preceedings by describing the spat as a ‘neighbours’ dispute that has escalated’.

Previous story (AJ 06.12.11)

Mayor to judge on Allies and Morrison’s Elephant and Castle tower

London mayor Boris Johnson has stepped in to make a final decision over Allies and Morrison’s 43-storey mixed-use Elephant and Castle tower in south London

Johnson will now decide whether to approve the 137.5m-tall project which was turned down by local authority Southwark Council two months ago.

The scheme was refused against planning officers’ recommendations because of concern over its social housing provision, compliance with the London plan and viability.

Neighbouring nightclub Ministry of Sound had also been a long running objector to the scheme which it claimed could force it to curtail its commercial night club operations if future inhabitants complained over noise.

Graham Morrison of Allies and Morrison said he would be ‘pleased’ if the project was approved, adding: ‘I very much hope that is the outcome.’


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