Decision on 26 storey Ilford shopping centre development mysteriously delayed by investor

PUBLISHED: 07:00 20 April 2016 | UPDATED: 13:23 20 April 2016

An artists impression of outside the Exchange Shopping Centre car par, after the 200 flat development is completed. Picture: Meyer Bergman

An artists impression of outside the Exchange Shopping Centre car par, after the 200 flat development is completed. Picture: Meyer Bergman

Meyer Bergman

A meeting to decide the future of a 214-flat development above an Ilford shopping centre, has been mysteriously cancelled by the investor.

Councillors were set to judge plans to build a 26 storey skyscraper on top of The Exchange Shopping Centre’s car park, in Myrtle Road, Ilford, on Tuesday at a special regulatory committee.

But yesterday afternoon real estate investors Meyer Bergman asked to reschedule the meeting due to “technical issues”.

They refused to give any comment to the Recorder with any further details on the cancellation or their plans to regenerate Ilford.

Public papers show the investor proposes to redevelop the area above the car park, with 11 storey and 26 storey tower blocks, and an elevated garden with shops and restaurants.

Within the skyscrapers there will be 214 one to three bedroom flats, but currently only 16 on these have been designated affordable.

Campaigner John Clifton described the plans as “absolutely pathetic”.

He said: “The Fairness Commission stated at least 30 per cent of all housing developments must be affordable.

“This is a test of whether this administration is serious of achieving that or whether they will fall over like previous administrations.”

Meyer Bergman refused give any more details about the affordable housing within the proposals.

Their planned development is located within the Ilford Housing Zone.

Announced last June, the council pledged to build 2,189 homes by 2021 with funding from the Mayor of London and private investors.

Of these 553 have been designated affordable, but The Exchange development would only make up 2.8pc of that target.

Council leader Cllr Jas Athwal said his administration intended to stick by the Fairness Commission’s objective of 30pc affordable housing.

He explained: “All developers really need to be offering somewhere close to that figure, until that happens the council’s hands are going to be tied.

“What is the point of setting a target if we just let people with only 10pc affordable build.”

A spokesman for the council said: “We are deferring the applications to allow late representations to be considered and a few technical matters to be clarified.”

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