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HTA lops six storeys off tower block by Hoover Building to win consent

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A reworked version of a housing block next to the Grade II*-listed Hoover Building in London’s Perivale has been given planning consent

HTA Design drew on the Art Deco masterpiece for its original design of a part 10-storey, part 22-storey housing block.

But its application, for build-to-rent developer Amro Living, was rejected by Ealing Borough councillors in September over concerns it would have a detrimental impact on the Hoover Building.

Now the practice has been given permission for the scheme after reducing the height of its tower to 16 storeys. The scheme will now have 278 homes, down from 305, of which 68 will be affordable.

Historic England objected to HTA’s earlier application for the site, arguing that it would ‘undermine the landmark status’ of the 1933 Hoover Building, which was designed by Wallis, Gilbert and Partners.

However, Historic England withdrew its objection for the latest planning application. It said the Hoover Building was ‘designed to be an eye-catching landmark in fleeting views along the A40’ and the reduction in height of the tower reduced the harm caused to views from the road.

But the Ealing Civic Society remained critical of the new proposal. In a statement, it said: ‘We applaud the reduction in height of the building since the previous application, which addresses the development’s impact on the view from directly in front of the Hoover Building.

‘However, the proposed blocks in this application would still be highly visible from other viewpoints, such as the surrounding low-level streets and several open spaces.

It added: ‘We note the slight uplift in the number of dual-aspect flats, but consider that the proportion with single aspect (now 48 per cent) remains too low.’

HTA Design said it aimed to ‘avoid pastiche replications’ and pursue a ‘modern interpretations of well-known Art Deco motifs’.

In a statement the practice said the ‘detailing and materiality of the building references the architecture of the iconic Hoover building’, while its ‘elevation and sweeping curves take cues from the Art Deco era, with strong horizontal bands of white glazed brick and alternating bands of terracotta panels and glazing’.

The former Hoover factory’s main building opened in 1933 and was constructed using a steel-reinforced concrete frame. It has a ‘snowcrete’ exterior, a type of Portland-limestone cement with a white pigment, and Egyptian-inspired details on its façade.

In the late 1980s the Hoover Company stopped producing vacuum cleaners and Tesco purchased the site. A factory building located behind the main office building was demolished but the significant structures were preserved and restored.

After many years lying unused, the main Hoover Building was acquired by IDM Properties in 2015 and converted into 66 luxury flats in a scheme designed by Interrobang.

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