Thursday, 26 November 2009

Weekly (or thereabouts) round-up . . .

Fungus on decayed gangways - Heygate

I delayed writing this because on Tuesday evening, the council was meant to rubber stamp its deal with Lend Lease, the Aussie developers. However, no deal was signed, and another meeting is set for Monday, the 30th of November, after which the exclusivity agreement between Lend Lease and Southwark Council will end. This has already happened in July. A new deal could be signed, or both parties could end their relationship, putting the whole regeneration in limbo.

From Southwark news: Yet Another Delay in plan to regenerate Elephant and Castle:

 London SE1 reports: Elephant and Castle Shopping Centre redevelopment to be delayed indefinitely.

The article quotes Peter John, leader of the Labour group:
"This new deal with Lend Lease amounts to little more than throwing Heygate residents out of their homes and building new luxury housing which they won't be able to afford. What are tenants and residents getting out of it? The Lib Dems are selling Elephant & Castle short and betraying the existing community.
"Demolishing the shopping centre and removing the roundabouts and underpasses is absolutely central to starting a new chapter for Elephant & Castle, but this new deal put those plans on ice. It doesn't even include an indication of when the Lib Dems expect the core of Elephant & Castle to be transformed.
"Leisure facilities which made up such a central part of the original deal aren't even mentioned in this new deal, and neither is the new school, library or Northern line station which were also promised."
Also from London SE1: Could Elephant and Castle be the new South Bank?  Southwark Council holds culture conference.

I have also discovered the community forums on LondonSe1, including a lively discussion under the heading: E&C: back to the drawing board? which began in June, 2008 and continues to this day.

I tried to find some information on the Southwark Council news page but nothing has been posted as of yet.

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Weekly (or thereabouts) round-up . . .

                      New face of the Elephant? Condos behind the Heygate Estate

From London SE1: Boris Johnson 'actively trying to broker Elephant and Castle regeneration deal'. Developers Lend Lease are 'in a dire position' due to the credit crunch. Boris goes on to say:

"It's a fantastic project and we'll do everything we can to help it go ahead," said the Mayor.
"The trouble is we've got a credit crunch and the developers – Lend Lease I think it is – are simply in a dire position.
"So the [section] 106 money that's normally available is not going to be available to do the fantastic things.
"I know that we're actively trying to broker a deal between Southwark Council and Lend Lease. We want to get it done, and if we possibly can, we will."

Micheal Caine has been all over the papers, of course, due to his film 'Harry Brown', part of which is being filmed on the Heygate.

From the Sun: 'Screen Legend Micheal Caine on Broken Britain' (Sir Micheal blames Labour). And from Harry Brown Looks at Broken Britain

And even Clint Eastwood has been spotted on the Heygate and the Walworth area. From South London Press: Clint Eastwood rides into Walworth

And from the blog Love London Council Housing: a live report from the Heygate Estate. Aside from complimenting yours truly, they write:

. . .as of last Friday (Oct. 30th), there wre 117 secure, non secure tenants and leaseholders left - 67 secure tenants, of whom half have direct offers for alternative accommodation.  Those left behind . . . are living surrounded by vacant properties boarded up to keep out squatters.
 So the drama continues. According to London Se1, Lend Lease's exclusivity agreement is due to expire at the end of November. If all falls through, maybe the council can turn the Heygate into a movie set!