A new town centre for West Norwood

The heart of West Norwood town centre lies between York Hill and Lansdowne Hill.  It currently includes 80 homes, mostly above shops, a B&Q store, the Texaco garage, Knowles, Iceland plus many independent smaller shops. There has been talk about revamping the town centre for many years but the only recent development are the new flats above Iceland.

The council calls this area of the town centre Site 18 and is now consulting the community on fresh plans until Feb 21st. To see the details and make your views known go online to: https://lambethsadpdsite18.commonplace.is/ 

The new plans for Site 18 indicate 400 to 500 new homes including between 165 and 295 ‘affordable’ homes. The proposal is to divide the area into 14 blocks of 5 to 12 storeys to ensure its easy to walk or cycle around.  There is no mention of car parking. The ground floors would be mainly for employment use and at least 50% of the units facing onto Norwood Road would be shops. A new road linking Lansdowne Hill and York Hill would be required. The plan would set back the new shops so the pavement is wider and include a small public square opposite Chatsworth Way.

The site is complicated to rebuild as there are so many different land owners involved. So the site might be redeveloped piecemeal. Or the landowners might come together as a partnership to  re-develop the site as one build. Whichever way it goes it will mean several years of disruption and construction in the town centre.

Ideas from previous consultations on the future of the town centre are in West Norwood master plan [pdf] dated April 2017.


Filed under Employment, Environment, Housing, Lambeth Council, Local Business, Parking, Planning, Shopping, Transport, West Norwood

4 responses to “A new town centre for West Norwood

  1. Charles Evans

    I doubt I’ll be the first person to register their concern about this plan. Or the last. I’m fully in favour of moving forward with capital investment and development but it has to be careful and thoughtful. Neither of those tend to be compatible with profit, alas. We understand the need for more housing but can West Norwood sustain 500 new households? Do the plans involve schools, health hubs, etc etc. I ask, because it has been observed that no provision is envisaged for parking. Are the new residents to be prohibited from owning or using a car?

    And, should it be considered important by any, what’s it going to look like? Hopefully nothing like the diagram.

    I can’t see this happening without a real struggle with the residents. Or at all.

    • Michael Ball

      There’s a lot being covered by this policy, affecting over 80 existing households, mainly in social housing, with a huge impact given the potential complete demolition of blocks of homes, as well as dozens of shops and businesses. The high street and neighbourhood could definitely benefit from 500 new households (although not so sure about the proposed tall building at the centre!), but the manner in which this is done – and done to existing residents and businesses – is the most important issue. The council have to take residents, businesses and landowners with them, and churning out this 300 page document (including the ‘evidence base’) in an electronic consultation is no way to do that, and says everything about how the council goes about things the wrong way. Come on councillors! We need a joined up approach with the Forum, NAG, T&RAs, businesses and the BID; we need public meetings, better explanations – a co-production of a neighbourhood, not inert tablets of dessicated planning policy! Above all, we need leadership.

  2. Taking note of the Norwood forum charter…
    particularly “… We want Norwood to have buildings and spaces that are well designed, with the necessary infrastructure and that is sympathetic to the existing character. This should respect existing building heights and work with the varied topography and spectacular views that our neighbourhood benefits from.”
    I agree with the previous objections. 400 – 500 new homes, extra cars etc. will cause an overload to an already congested area. Also there are no high rise buildings so the addition of two new ones will not be in keeping with the surrounding houses.
    The actual construction will cause problems…
    “….Whichever way it goes it will mean several years of disruption and construction in the town centre….”

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