Judge throws out Doon Street tower challenge
A man who claims he will be living in the shadow of Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands’ proposed 43-storey Doon Street tower at London’s Waterloo should have complained earlier, a High Court judge has ruled.
William Ashton claimed the skyscraper on the Southbank would overshadow the balcony of his flat at Broadwall, some 260 metres east of the development site.
Ashton was cleared to challenge planning permission for the construction of the tower, which will boast 329 new homes, a community sports centre, swimming pool and commercial premises, by former communities secretary Hazel Blears in 2008. His claim has already been rejected by Judge Mole at the High Court.
However, his latest challenge has also fallen foul in the eyes of Appeal Court judge Lord Justice Pill who ruled that Mr Ashton lacked legal ‘standing’ as he had not lodged a complaint during the public inquiry before planning permission was granted.
Sitting with Lord Justice Maurice Kay and Lord Justice Moore-Bick, he said: ‘I do not consider that the appellant had standing to bring the present claim. His participation in the planning process was insufficient in the circumstances to acquire standing.
‘He was not an objector to the proposal in any formal sense and did not make representations, either oral or written, at the properly constituted
Iain Tuckett, group director of project backers Coin Street Community Builders, said: ‘We are delighted that we are finally able to move forward with our plans for 329 new homes and these much-needed public swimming and indoor leisure facilities. It will substantially improve the environment around Waterloo Bridge and the National Theatre and will enhance London’s skyline.’
Previous story (06.10.09)
English Heritage gives up fight against Doon Street tower
English Heritage (EH) and Westminster City Council have decided not to carry on with its legal battle to try and stop Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands’ Doon Street tower
In a statement released to the AJ, EH said it decided not to appeal against the recent High Court decision to allow the practice’s contentious 43-storey skyscraper near London’s South Bank.
EH mounted an ‘unprecedented’ legal challenge to torpedo the project,claiming the tower would cause ‘irreparable harm’ to the setting of Somerset House on the opposite side of the Thames, after Communities Secretary Hazel Blears came out in its favour last August.
The statement reads: ‘Despite the leave to appeal granted… we have decided not to pursue the issue further. Reaching this decision has been difficult and we continue to believe that the development will permanently harm, not enhance, London’s precious historic environment.
‘EH and Westminster City Council jointly challenged the decision to grant planning permission for the Doon Street scheme because we felt that the advice of the planning inspector to the then Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government was clear. It is important that where a Secretary of State does not agree with their expert Inspector, that her reasons for doing so are clear, reasoned and complete.
‘It is of continued concern to us that the subsidised community facilities espoused by many as a benefit so valuable that the provision thereof would outweigh any or all of the harm caused by the scheme, are not secured and may not be delivered.’
The scheme for Coin Street Community Builders will house 329 new homes and public swimming pool and leisure centre. The scheme was backed by local MP Kate Hoey, Lambeth Council and both Richard Rogers and Terry Farrell.