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CABE calls for 'compromised' power station scheme to be scrapped

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CABE has called for Paul Brookes Architects to scrap its proposals for a new residential scheme in south-west London, due to serious doubts over the design.

The practice plans to transform a former power station in Kingston-upon-Thames into a 15-storey residential block along with a six to eight-storey hotel, but CABE is refusing to back the scheme, claiming the architecture is 'compromised'.

The report said: 'We have fundamental concerns about this scheme, which is, we believe, based on an inappropriate building and form.

'As a result of this, we think that the pedestrian experience, the quality of life for future residents and the architecture itself are compromised.

'We therefore cannot support this planning application and think a fresh start is required in producing development proposals for this site.'

Practice principal Paul Brookes claims his firm and client are playing 'piggy in the middle' between Kingston Council and the Greater London Authority (GLA), with both giving contradictory advice.

Brookes said: 'We're being told to do one thing by Kingston and something totally different by the GLA. Kingston says we need to add more parking, while the GLA is telling us to have no parking whatsoever.

'We have taken on board CABE's comments, but we have been listening to the planning officers' recommendations and we are not minded to change the scheme. We already have approval for some of the buildings on the same site.'

by Richard Vaughan

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