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Mayor urged to reject revamp of Seifert and Partners' tower

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The London mayor has been urged to throw out a plan to revamp Seifert and Partners’ Tolworth Tower in Kingston which would see four further mid-rise blocks raised on the site.

The call comes from the chair of the south London authority’s development control committee, Richard Hudson, who refused to take part in the vote earlier this month that approved the scheme.

Mr Hudson presented a petition against the plan to the committee, signed by more than 450 opponents.

Under plans by London-based architects Careyjones Chapmantolcher, the 1960s tower would be rejigged to create 68 serviced apartments and 108 homes. Office space on its first six floors would be retained.

Its proposal includes four further blocks on the surrounding site of five, 12, 15 and 19 storeys to create an extra 962m2 of commercial space and some 200 homes.

While no affordable housing is proposed for the site, developer CNM Estates has offered £3m towards provision elsewhere in the south London borough. Kingston upon Thames Council could also benefit from a share in the scheme’s profits as part of an agreement with the developer.

In his letter to mayor Boris Johnson, Hudson said: ‘These plans fail Kingston, fail London and fail our residents on many levels.

“I therefore ask you, along with my fellow ward councillors, to reject this application and send it back to the ‘could do much better’ box for CNM Estates to come back with a much better scheme.’

He added that the developer’s plans clashed with policies in the mayor’s London Plan as well as Kingston’s policies on home sizes, affordable housing, parking, traffic impact and design quality.

Tolworth Tower, which currently accommodates retail, office and hotel space, was one of the first developments built on London’s outskirts with a car park large enough to allow workers to commute to it rather than the centre of the city.

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