Ealing Council scraps plans for council HQ which would have created 477 homes
aling Council has scrapped plans for a 26-storey tower scheme at its council offices which would have provided 477 homes.
The council had previously approved the scheme for the site of its headquarters in Uxbridge Road, west London, which would have seen six buildings ranging from six to 26 storeys constructed.
However, the council will now ditch the plan, citing a rise in the cost of building materials, and the two-staircase rule for all London residential buildings over 30m tall, reported the Architects’ Journal.
Instead, the existing six-storey building, which dates from 1982, will be refurbished.
The ground floor will be given over to community space, the first and second floors will be rented to local businesses, and the upper three floors will remain Ealing Council offices.
Council leader Peter Mason said: “When this administration inherited the old plans for Perceval House, it was clear the proposals represented a huge change for the borough, with a big financial commitment and many years of disruption.
“With the old scheme now at an end, we can turn our minds to reimagining a new council building, open to the public, accessible to residents’ needs, with the community at the heart of it.”
The previous plans were approved by the council in March 2021.
Town hall planning officers had originally recommended the scheme for approval, saying the scheme would “deliver a high quality and modern new residential accommodation to a high standard”.
However, some 2,300 objections were received, with Rupa Huq, the Labour MP for Ealing Central and Acton, speaking in objection.
She said the scheme “was the biggest in Ealing for a century in the very civic heart of the borough” and was “on public land up for mostly developer-led private gain”.
Responding to the news that the plans had been shelved, she said it was “good news – for a change.”
However, some questioned the loss of 477 new prospective homes during a housing crisis.
“How is this “good news”?” said one. “Your party’s “first time buyer first” plan won’t work in Ealing if you’re stopping any supply for houses for them to buy.”
Another added: “Given that we’re in a housing crisis, I just don’t think it makes much sense for Labour MPs to be pandering to NIMBYs at the expense of young people who just want to afford a home?”