Meyer Homes’ plan for 950 homes along with a £250 million contribution to improve the Tolworth roundabout, have been approved by Kingston Council.
The application also includes better pedestrian and cycle links, a new bus interchange and an extension of the 281 bus service. Other benefits of the plans include a community facility, a childrens’ day nursery, a doctors’ surgery, space for the Metropolitan Police and a new convenience store.
Cllr Patricia Bamford, Chair of the Development Control Committee at Kingston Council, said: “This brownfield site has been left abandoned for over a decade and the need for housing has been growing thoughout that period. This is a large development that will deliver much needed housing in the borough, 30% (285 units) of which is affordable.
“We made the difficult decision to approve the scheme after careful consideration of all the facts, weighing opinions expressed that the development is too dense, against the need for housing and the clear directions placed upon us by Government and the Mayor of London.”
Cllr Malcolm Self, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Planning Policy, Culture and Heritage at Kingston Council, said: “In March 2016, Kingston Council refused to grant planning permission for 705 homes on the site. The Secretary of State dismissed Meyer Homes’ planning appeal citing a lack of confidence in their ability to deliver the wider community benefits needed to support the scheme. But he also said that the site was capable of delivering more than 705 homes and that the road network would not suffer any adverse affects. This was a material consideration that members of the committee had to take into account.
“The scheme also helps meet the housing targets set out in the Mayor of London’s current ‘London Plan’ to build 9,000 new homes in Kingston over the next 15 years. The Mayor’s new draft London Plan sets Kingston a target of building more than 13,500 homes over the next decade.”
This decision gives the go-ahead for Meyer Homes to build the first phase of the development for 211 homes as well as the extension of the 281 bus and other community benefits. The remainder of the scheme is in outline only and the council will continue to work closely with Meyer Homes to ensure that the designs for the next phases are informed by the community and reviewed by the council.
Members of the Development Control Committee approved the application for the former Government Offices site on Wednesday 11 July.