Green Light for Controversial Earls Court Development

Opposition blast Mayor's decision as 'gerrymandering and social engineering'

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Boris Johnson has given the go ahead to an £8 billion redevelopment project around Earls Court.

The application has already been approved by Hammersmith & Fulham and Kensington and Chelsea Councils but the final say was with the Mayor. Last week Boris Johnson had come face to face with protestors from the West Kensington and Gibbs Green Estates who are worried about losing their homes which will be demolished to make way for the new scheme.

The redevelopment means the closure of Earls Court Exhibition Centres which will be replaced by as many as 6,700 new homes. Transport for London, which the Mayor chairs, is a major landholder on the development site and stands to make a windfall when the project goes ahead.

There was an angry reaction to the decision from opposition politicians particularly given the low level of affordable housing planned in the scheme. It is believed that only 10% of the units will fall into that category against 40% according to the Mayor's own guidelines.

Hammersmith MP, Andy Slaughter described the decision as 'gerrymandering and social engineering' saying that it was 'public land sold to developer for a fraction of its value with no review during 20 year build period to minimise low cost homes

Darren Johnson who is a London Assembly member for the Green Party said on Twitter, 'Earls Court redevelopment decision will do massive damage to London and UK economy.'



July 3, 2013