Local residents oppose new residential development on Hackney Road

Occupiers of neighbouring homes worry that the two-storey roof extension will block views and impact house prices.

East London residents have opposed plans to build six new flats in their neighbourhood because they claim they will lose out on views and house prices will change in the area.

Cyntra Properties Ltd is looking to build six “residential apartments” through a roof extension on a four-storey building on Hackney Road in Tower Hamlets.

The building consists of a Sainsbury’s Local at street level while existing flats are located directly above it.

If the planning application is given the green light, the developer would build the new homes through a two-storey roof extension, according to a Tower Hamlets Council document.

It also plans to remove and replace any “combustible materials” such as cladding while future residents wouldn’t be blocked from accessing on-street car parking permits as the development plans to be car-free.

During the consultation stage residents living nearby were sent letters about the plans and notices were put up near the site.

The consultation came back with 21 objections from those already living in the building as well as residents living on the opposite side of Hackney Road and Cadell House which is a few minutes walk away.

Objections ranged from “increased noise” to “overheating of residential units” as well as an “increase in anti-social behaviour”.

Other objections included “loss of a view”, “impact on house prices/rental values”, “fire safety of existing cladding” and “loss of daylight/sunlight and overshadowing and issues with report”.

Residents also argued there would be a loss of privacy and a loss of sunlight due to overshadowing.

In response to the concerns of residents, planning officer Daniel Jeffries wrote in a document: ‘Concerns have been raised from occupiers of neighbouring homes regarding the potential for the proposed homes to overheat and have a detrimental impact on standard of accommodation for future occupiers, given the orientation of the windows.

‘However, given that there are other units within the host building which have a similar orientation, it is considered acceptable and these matters are also managed outside planning through the building control regulatory system.’

Further along in the document, Mr Jeffries said: ‘Concerns have been raised as regards the fire safety of the existing cladding.

‘However, the council can confirm that the existing cladding would be replaced as part of this application with non-combustible cladding.’

In 2020 the council refused an application to build eight new flats in the same building because the planned height of the two-storey roof extension would have an impact on Grade II listed properties on the opposite side of Hackney Road.

It had also been rejected because it was not clear whether the planned cycle storage area physically had room for more cycle spaces.

The applicant then attempted to appeal the decision however this was later dismissed by the Planning Inspectorate in 2021 because the plans could not deliver a car-free development.

Mr Jeffries said the new planning application ‘is considered to result in additional benefits in comparison to the previously dismissed appeal schemes this includes providing a reduced number of residential units [six rather than eight], which have improved and acceptable standard of accommodation, as well as providing an obligation for affordable housing financial contributions.’

The planning application has been recommended to be granted but will ultimately be heard by Tower Hamlets Council’s development committee at a meeting later this week (April 27).

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