.

.
Click above for what became the consented plan, plus Transport page.

2010-12-31

The Independent: "What's the official line on incinerators? There isn't one"

The Independent:
Michael McCarthy commentary
The Independent:
"Chancellor opposes waste disposal on his doorstep"



See earlier incinerator item here.

'Things to Come' (would you have trusted Hammerson with this?)

London Communications Agency: 'Localism Bill' Report

Link to LCA web site
"[Beyond the] 'Olympic Park Legacy Company' ... we could see more 'Mayoral Development Corporations'.

"The Mayor is allowed to establish MDCs anywhere he sees fit, and for any purpose – a major addition to the GLA’s development armoury. In time we could potentially see a string of MDCs across the capital – which would not go down well with many boroughs."

"[In addition,] the introduction of a new distinct local boundary defined as a ‘Neighbourhood’ is one of the key new elements of the localism agenda. While neighbourhood planning could be a force for good, ... it may also be used by organised NIMBYs to oppose development."


See a later Localism Bill item here.
See an earlier Localism Bill item here.

'Broken Barnet' Awards 2010 (Unfortunately, no ironic award* for 'London Communications Agency')

From Mrs Angry's Broken Barnet blog:

"... Finally, and most important of all: the 'Broken Barnet Civic Award'.

"The winner has dedicated an enormous amount of his time, energy and enthusiasm, on behalf of the residents of this borough, taking the initiative when local press and politicians have failed to act, and campaigned on countless issues of concern to us all.

"I refer, of course, to Mr Roger Tichborne, and his Barnet Eye blog [including 'Allowancegate' post and 'Leadership' post].

"Commendations too to fellow bloggers Vicki Morris, for her eternal optimisim, Mr Reasonable, for his eagle-eyed armchair auditing, and of course, the master, DCMD (when he just can't stop himself)."

"But perhaps the last word, and the winning entry for 'Quote of the Year', should go to our dear Leader of the Council, Lynne Hillan, on 2 November:
"You won't teach me anything about incompetence."

* See bottom-left of PR Week Award Winner 2010

2010-12-30

Hammerson Christmas Trading (Our conclusion: stick to shopping centres then, Hammerson)

Link to Hammerson press release
"Prime shopping centres have performed well over the festive period (Boxing Day, 27th and 28th December) with Hammerson attracting 2.25 million consumers to its nine regional centres.

"At Brent Cross in London, footfall for the 27th December was up nearly 60%, with the centre welcoming close to 90,000 consumers, which was a record footfall figure in its 34 years of trading."

Hammerson’s shopping centre portfolio comprises: Union Square in Aberdeen, Silverburn in Glasgow, Bullring in Birmingham, Highcross in Leicester, Queensgate in Peterborough, Brent Cross in North London, The Oracle in Reading, WestQuay in Southampton [warning: this web site auto-plays 'elevator music'], and Cabot Circus in Bristol.

Hammerson Blighty
Hammerson France

Link to later Hammerson item.
Link to earlier Hammerson item.

2010-12-29

The Independent: "Waste crisis means 80 giant furnaces set for go-ahead in 2011"

Link to The Independent

"... But with further capacity for 1.2 million tonnes of waste-burning already planned, the industry is not having it all its own way – despite the backing of business leaders including the CBI, which earlier this year urged councils to bury their objections to building new incinerators."

"Vehement opposition comes from environmentalists, who claim that incinerators contribute to greenhouse gases and discourage councils from meeting more ambitious recycling goals.

See later Incinerator item here.

2010-12-22

Cricklewood Improvement Programme web site launched (-ish)

Click above for web site
"Welcome. Happy Christmas from Danny and Paul ....

"Behind the scenes, a small army of elves and snowmen is busy putting together CIP's very own website, which will be released soon!"

CBI: End of Year Environmental Report

Visit CBI web site

"The CBI started tracking climate policy after the Climate Change Act was passed in 2008.

"It focuses on the areas of the economy where we need to cut emissions most: power generation, buildings, transport and industry."

Hammerson's Lord Mayor of London writes in the Evening Standard

Link to Evening Standard
"This isn't just about money: we all have something we can give."

Previous Lord Mayor item is here.

The Ecologist: "Air pollution linked to 200,000 premature deaths in UK"

Link to the Ecologist
"Long-term exposure to particulate pollution, largely from road traffic, is shortening the lives of as many as 200,000 every year, according to a government advisory committee.

"The UK faces a £300 million fine for failing to meet new EU targets for reducing air pollution, and has desperately sought to delay its deadlines."

Also: link to the Daily Telegraph (with comments)

2010-12-21

The North London Waste Authority: "Let's run it up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes it"

Odds and ends, starting with edited highlights from 19 April 2010:

European tender invitation by the NLWA: 
Refuse and waste related services

What was it?

The Authority is seeking to award a Waste Services Contract ... to private sector partners ... for the provision of a solution for the treatment of municipal solid waste ("MSW").

New 'High Speed Two' Line: Route Announced

Click to enlarge. (The red spots are listed structures.)

(A railway expert writes:) There would be no Heathrow High Speed Line for now, just the main line into a rebuilt Euston station (and a link to the 'High Speed One' line, for international trains).

A High Speed Two station at Old Oak Common, alongside a Crossrail and Heathrow Express station on the Paddington line, would also be built (shown above). 

The railway drawn as a vertical line slightly left of centre above, is the Dudding Hill Freight Line, which leads to Brent Cross and Cricklewood. Not that Hammerson or Barnet are interested. The North Circular Road is off the map to the left above, which would be their favoured transport connection.

A road map for Hammerson to use is here. A railway map, for the rest of us, is below:

Click above to enlarge map.
(A reopened passenger railway to Brent Cross is here.)

2010-12-20

Recent Localism Bill Round Up: What the Papers Say

The Observer: 19 Dec 2010
"The tendency for strife will be great and the localism bill does not recognise there is a skill to planning"

Daily Telegraph blog: 13 Dec 2010 onwards
"Central governments are, as a rule, reluctant to devolve power. Today’s Localism Bill represents a rare and welcome exception to that rule."

The Independent: 17 Dec 2010
"The Bill includes a raft of legislation relating to planning that aims to move power from the centre to the community."

Evening Standard commentary: 20 Dec 2010. Plus comments!
"Mr Pickles likes to adapt the line from the Kevin Costner movie, Field of Dreams: 'If you devolve it, they will come.' He sees himself restoring Anglo-Saxon liberties from the Norman yoke."


See a later Localism Bill item here.
See an earlier Localism Bill item here.

2010-12-17

Hammerson's vision of future dystopia (alleged)


We say: No mention of the road congestion or the incinerator then?
And a bit light on the high rise, high-density, high-profit rabbit hutches, eh?
No slide about successful public consultation?
Hammerson are so bashful!


Link to later Hammerson item.
Link to earlier Hammerson item.

2010-12-15

Hammerson: “We are capitalising on the market recovery over the last 15 months, and have released funds for investment.”

Read me
for the rest of the story
VIDEO: Watch me, since
"the economic landscape has changed"

"The latest twist in the takeover saga came as the Spitalfields home of law firm Allen & Overy changed hands for £557 million, in the biggest London deal of the year.

"The sale of Bishops Square will net a £34 million profit for property giant Hammerson, which developed the project in 2005."



Link to later Hammerson item.

Westfield Stratford: Hammerson, eat your heart out

Link to Evening Standard

"This is a brave new world, as envisioned by Westfield, an extraordinary experiment. But what of its architectural merit? Of course, the idiom of the whole of the shopping centre is the slick, seamless style that developers call 'contemporary'.

"There is little in the way of distinctive architectural character in any of the buildings I saw — although I should say that most were not yet complete.

"Stratford is a deserving east London centre with potential, but after some interesting work in the mid-Nineties (including the refurbished theatre and the Picturehouse cinema) the regeneration of the town centre has stalled. Recent new housing on Stratford High Street is cynical and low quality."

[We say: Ah, a similarity to Hammerslum at the very end!]

2010-12-14

"This is a Local Bill for Local People, there's nothing for you here"


Link above to cartoonist Steve Bell at The Guardian,
or to the Minister of State here, or to a critical commentary here.

Link to the result of Barnet's 'Localism'

See a later Localism Bill item here.
See an earlier Localism Bill item here.

Private Eye cutting: The same fate for Barnet?

"Decentralisation, Minister?" "A very 'brave' decision, if I may say so, Minister!"


"This guide makes the case for a radical shift of power from the centralised state to local communities, and describes the six essential actions required to deliver decentralisation down through every level of government, to every citizen."

See a later Localism Bill item here.
See an earlier Localism Bill item here.

2010-12-13

'Mr Reasonable' blog questions accuracy of Barnet's financial projections

plus he gives other opinions, on officer reports to Monday's Cabinet...
"Actually reading through the list of proposed cuts is tragic. It appears to be hitting those in most need hardest, adult and children's social services.

"No mention of cutting the sky high salaries enjoyed by some of the senior managers. In fact, in a separate report it identifies that the council is raiding the contingency fund to pay for the additional £530,000 to fund new posts in the commercial department."

'Barnet Eye' blog - More things than just money, Hammerson...

SEVERAL years ago, when my mum was still alive, but rather doddery, she was trying to cross the road at the bottom of Millway. As she was recovering from a stroke, a car got rather impatient with her and the idiot driving wound down his window and gave her a volley of abuse, purely for being unable to cross the road quickly.

Evening Standard: "Mayor Boris has room for manoeuvre"

Mayor Boris Johnson has ordered housebuilders to stop erecting rabbit hutches. Housing minister Grant Shapps has told them to carry on.

Is a delicious row about to break out between the Mayor and the minister? Sadly not: what Boris says goes in London and what Shapps says counts for naught, said a spokeswoman for the Mayor.

The minimum space standards being introduced in London next April mean that new homes in the capital may well be 20% to 40% larger than any new boxes stuck up in the minister's constituency of Welwyn Hatfield. Serves him right if the voters complain.

Extracted from here.

Government: "Localism Bill starts a new era of people power" [Oh, Yeah?]

Press Release

2010-12-11

Met Office Hadley Centre: Two projected futures

Evening Standard; "Ministers to push Big Society idea" (Localism Bill)

Evening Standard

The legislation, to be published on Monday, will create:
  • A right to buy significant local buildings. If the council decides to sell property, communities will receive extra time to develop their bid.
  • Rights for the community to question how services are being run, and potentially take them over. This could include children's centres, social care services or transport.
  • More rights for communities over planning, deciding where developments of new homes should go and protecting green spaces.
See a later Localism Bill item here.
See an earlier Localism Bill item here.

    2010-12-09

    North London Waste Authority - a Beacon of Openness and Transparancy (23 Across: "What a Load of Old ......." [7 letters])

    Don't get your hopes up, but there's something on page 12.
    (There are also other documents below)

    Zero-Carbon Housing: George Monbiot accuses; Grant Shapps responds

    "Government redefines zero, as it abandons green homes commitment"
    Link to The Guardian, 26 Nov. 2010
    "Shapps maintains (without providing any reasoning to justify it) that deregulation will save an implausible £8,000 per home for house-builders. But abandoning even the modest energy-efficiency standards proposed by the last government will load future costs on householders, as the crappy homes they'll have to live in will cost a fortune to keep warm."



    "UK remains committed to zero-carbon homes"
    Link to The Guardian, 6 Dec. 2010
    "I want to reassure everyone who's eager to see greener homes – change is on its way, and very soon I'll be setting out our progress towards achieving a zero-carbon approach, and the next steps we'll be taking."

    2010-12-08

    Bestway bowls a wrong'un at North London Waste Authority (The Ashes - incinerators - gettit?)

    BXC Scheme / NLWA / DEFRA / PFI Bidders

    Dear North London Waste Authority,

    Bestway notices that DEFRA has just published the criteria upon which they evaluated the current PFI bids from around the country. [Here - hope you like lime green.]

    Northern Line Incident, August 2010: "There could have been fatalities"

    London Underground detailed report -- featured because of our readership in the Northern Line catchment area...

    Click for full technical report (34 pages, PDF)

    2010-12-07

    The Guardian: "Committee on Climate Change wants emissions cut 60% by 2030"


    "The CCC's carbon budgets are intended to reflect the levels of cuts required internationally to avoid dangerous climate change, often defined as a rise of more than 2C above pre-industrial temperatures.

    "Chris Huhne, the secretary of state for energy and climate change, said:
    "We know that the status quo will not be enough to cut carbon. We will formally respond to the report in spring next year."

    2010-12-05

    Telegraph: "Grant your own planning permission, government tells homeowners" [plus Localism Bill]

    Click for article and comments
    "The provisions of the Localism Bill are expected to allow groups of householders to apply to become 'neighbourhoods' with defined boundaries, based on existing groups of streets or larger areas. There would be a 'presumption' that local authorities would officially recognise these new neighbourhoods."
    See a later Localism Bill item here.
    See an earlier Localism Bill item here.

    2010-12-04

    'Barnet Eye' blog: Latest Barnet Council planning scandal - "Shedgate"

    This is an example of shed advertising now on the 'Barnet Eye' web site.
    Click above to see if there is more!
    (No sheds have been harmed in the production of this link.)

    Monday 6 Dec. 2.30pm: LONDON PLANNING & DEVELOPMENT FORUM public meeting

    Discussion Items:
    The Localism Bill, the Comprehensive Spending Review effects
    and a resumé of the London Plan EIP.

    UPDATE: Due to the elitism of developers?architects?planners?, they do not consider being a"member of the public" to be sufficient qualification for attending.

    2010-12-03

    Friends of the Earth national web site: Duck House seminar and DEFRA

    Click above for FoE web site on Houses of Parliament 
    incinerator seminar
    Click Here for Earlier Post about incinerator seminar


    Click above for FoE web site on DEFRA withdrawal of 
    PFI funding of North London Waste Authority
    Click Here for Earlier Post about DEFRA's withdrawal of PFI funding for NLWA


    “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
    West London treads the path of North London, just a bit more slowly, here.

    2010-12-01

    Climate Change Mess: Prescott Steps In

    Daily Telegraph: "Minister Greg Clark says residents will be given power to block supermarkets and housing developments"

    Rosa Prince, Political Correspondent:
    Daily Telegraph
    "Greg Clark, the Communities Minister, announced that residents will be able to hold mini-referendums on "neighbourhood plans," which councils would be required by law to abide by." 
    See a later Localism Bill item here.
    See an earlier Localism Bill item here.

    The Guardian: "Will the localism bill prepare the ground for smart cities?"

    Link to The Guardian

    "Integrated networks of district heating and cooling, power, communication and data, vacuum recycling, and public transport all flow along, and beneath, city streets.

    "They serve attractive, diverse communities and places, which are genuinely accessible in every meaning of the word."

    'Parish Council' across borough boundaries for Cricklewood?

    Click for 'Society Guardian'
    "One of the things I expect to follow from these new powers being available is for new arrangements to spring up around neighbourhoods – they may not call themselves parishes, but in essence have a much more local focus than existing borough councils"

     See a later Localism Bill item here.

    2010-11-23

    Barnet Residents Forums – still no tea and biscuits offered. [updated]

    The current round of Residents' Forums is as follows:

    None of this, thank you very much.
    (We don't actually WANT you to attend.)
     Chipping Barnet  - Monday, 29 November 2010, 6.30pm, Coppetts Wood Primary School, Coppetts Road, Friern Barnet, N10.  Details

     Hendon  - Tuesday, 30 November 2010, 6.30pm, St Joseph's Pastoral Centre, St Joseph's Grove, The Burroughs, Hendon, NW4.  Details

    If you live in Barnet, you are represented by one of these three forums.


    Barnet councillors and officers
    (Cups of tea after all!)
     Finchley & Golders Green  - Tuesday, 23 November 2010, 6.30pm, St Michael's Church Hall, The Riding, Off Golders Green Road, Golders Green.  Details

    Report of the Meeting

    "Mrs X was rather surprised to be told at the last Forum that the erstwhile 'Citizens Panel', of which she was a member, had been quietly put to sleep, due to the expense. At the same meeting, she was told that the Citizens Panel was also still being used, as part of the standard 'consultation' process.

    "Of course, in the Alice in Wonderland corporate world of Broken Barnet, it is perfectly normal for two completely different things to be true at the same time, as many of the answers given at these events will tell you."

    Full report here.

     

    Link to Mrs A's friend: