Green Man Lane Estate Re-Development
Notes from Meeting 24th March
The meeting was held in the Ealing Centre for Independent Living, Bayham Road, West Ealing
Thirty people attended this meeting including representatives from Rydon Construction (the builders), Conran (the architects) and A2Dominion (the putative new owners and managers of the GMLE re-development). Representatives from Ealing Council were invited but none of them turned up to the meeting.
Rydon surprised WEN by stating that the Ealing Council Planning Meeting which would decide the two Planning Applications (P/2010/0418 and P/2010/0419) would take place in June 2010. This, seemingly, was in spite of the Council’s 17 February letter to WEN which states ‘…the Local Authority is under statutory obligation to issue a formal decision on this proposal by 10/05/2010’!
Rydon expects a report on GMLE by CABE (national government’s architectural advisors) in April, 2010.
Concerns raised by local residents included:
1. The project management aspects of what could be a ten year demolition/construction project. Where exactly would trucks enter and leave the GMLE area?
2. The current traffic congestion and regular road rage on Felix and Endsleigh Roads would most likely get worse with vehicles entering the former from an extended Green Man Lane/re-purposed Romney Road and entering the latter from a re-purposed Talbot Road.
3. What exactly was /is the objective of the re-development?
4. Currently there are 369 Ealing Council (‘Social Rented’) properties on the site. Once built there will be 334 (A2Dominion) Social Rented properties on the site. With over 11,000 people on Ealing Council’s housing waiting list it seems perverse to reduce the number of Social Rented properties on the site.
5. 1,200 additional residents will live on the site which is situated in an already densely populated area.
6. Will the local Primary and Secondary schools have the capacity to educate the incoming additional children?
7. Will the local NHS healthcare centres be able to handle the additional 1,200 local residents?
8. Can the local rail and bus services be improved to cope with the 1,200 new residents?
9. Will the (less than £6 million) Section 106 money be able to provide adequate ungraded educational, healthcare, transport and other facilities for the incoming 1,200 residents?
10. What is the status of the enhanced MUGA proposals for St John’s School playground, which is not part of the planning applications?
11. Will the security of tenure arrangements currently enjoyed by Ealing Council tenants at GMLE be downgraded when they become tenants of A2Dominion in the new GMLE?
12. The design of the new GMLE buildings is completely alien to the design of the surrounding Edwardian/Victorian residential terraces. No attempt, seemingly, has been made for the new GMLE to ‘mesh’ into its immediately adjacent urban landscape.
13. There are longstanding anti-social problems in many local developments. These include Drayton Green/Berners Drive Estate (built in 1980s); Hyde/Rosemount/Pershore Houses’ tower blocks straddling West Ealing Broadway/Singapore Road (2006); and in GMLE itself (1975). Why should we believe that the new GMLE will be any better?
14. Prior to 1971 (when demolition began at Green Man) the area was a vibrant community with Victorian terraces and a large factory which provided employment for many as well as small workshops. Why can’t traditional houses in streets be built to replace the failing GMLE tower blocks of today?
15. These development plans are for a new housing estate and virtually nothing else. Just what precisely would tempt anyone into the new GMLE unless they lived there or were visiting friends there?
16. The enclosed and ‘private’ east and west ‘Community Courtyards’ will have no significant play/activity/sporting facilities. Isn’t there a danger that they will become dumping areas for rubbish?
17. What will happen if the 303 for-sale homes do not find buyers?
18. It’s disappointing that Jacob’s Ladder will not be significantly improved or replaced as part of the re-development.
19. Parking facilities appear to be inadequate for the residents of 721 homes and also for a revitalised shopper experience in West Ealing Broadway.
20. Effective management of the new GMLE would be crucial to a successful re-development. WEN suggested that representatives form the wider community along with new GMLE resident representatives should have a formal role in working with A2Dominion in on-going management of the new GMLE.
WEN emphasised to the audience that all of these concerns could only be adequately dealt with (if at all) by Ealing Council regeneration and housing policy makers (elected Council Cabinet Members) and policy implementers (Council Officers).
March 26th 2010