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[Reposted from March 2010 - it's happened again in March 2014!] Coalition Pleased that Government Stalls Plans

Press release:

The Coalition for a Sustainable Brent Cross Cricklewood Plan are celebrating their biggest victory since they formed in September 2009.

Yesterday, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government issued a ‘stop notice’ under Article 14 of the Town and Country Planning Order 1995, saying:
The SoS hereby directs Barnet Council not to grant planning permission on this application without specific authorisation.

Boris Johnson had passed the plans on Friday, and the stop notice means that John Denham now has more time to decide whether to call in the development for a public inquiry. The Coalition believes the development fulfils every criterion for a call-in.

Coalition Co-ordinator Lia Colacicco was excited:
Hopefully the Secretary of State’s next move is to call a public inquiry immediately so that these disastrous plans can undergo full public scrutiny.

We were hoping that John Denham would stop this dinosaur of a development. He has much broader powers than the Mayor: it could be called in on several criteria, but in particular because its effects go far beyond the immediate area, local people don’t want it in this form, and because it is completely unsustainable in terms of traffic, housing, and the environment.

We are not surprised that John Denham has issued a ‘stop notice’. How would it look if this out-of-town development is allowed to go through with its incinerator and sub-standard housing, when by 2016 all other new housing will have to be carbon zero? We want an exciting and innovative place, built around people and public transport – including a local railway like the Docklands Light Railway. We need to use the latest green technology.
Darren Johnson, London Assembly member said:
There are better ways to spend £4.8bn if we want to revitalise this area. Londoners want less traffic, good local shops and more affordable homes, but the Mayor has rubberstamped a development that will bring the exact opposite to the area: another 29,000 cars, a threat to other neighbourhood shopping areas and one of the lowest affordable homes targets in London.
David Howard, Federation of Residents Associations in Barnet added:
The timing is interesting. The scheme may now struggle. Its greatest advocate in Barnet, Mike ‘easy council’ Freer is hoping to move away from the Council into Parliament. Westfield's White City shopping centre is under-performing. Brent Cross developer Hammerson is getting cold feet about doubling the size of the shopping area, and is moving its attention to France. The housing market has collapsed and the Brent Cross model is out of date. No wonder the developers have only committed to phase one. We await with interest what happens next.

Notes to Editors

1. The “Coalition for a Sustainable Brent Cross Cricklewood Plan” comprises twelve residents’ associations plus the Federation of Residents’ Associations in Barnet (representing the 12 largest residents’ associations in Barnet), Brent Cyclists, the North West London Light Railway (NWLLR) group, Brent Friends of the Earth (FoE), Barnet & Enfield FoE, Camden FoE, Sarah Teather (MP for Brent East), Dawn Butler (MP for Brent South), Labour and LibDem Councillors from Brent and Camden, Navin Shah (London Assembly Member for Brent and Harrow), Darren Johnson (London Assembly Member), Jean Lambert (London MEP), Brent Green Party, Barnet Green Party, Cllr Alexis Rowell (Chair of Camden Sustainability Taskforce), Barnet Trades Council (TUC) and Bestway Group.

2. The petition to call the development in for a public inquiry is available at: http://www.petition.co.uk/campaign_for_a_sustainable_brent_cross_cricklewood_development

3. The Coalition blog is at http://www.brentcrosscoalition.blogspot.com/

4. Facts about Brent Cross and the Coalition are at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brent_Cross and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coalition_for_a_Sustainable_Brent_Cross_Cricklewood

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