Controversial London project gets go ahead

By Sandy Guthrie22 June 2011

How the Chelsea Barracks site in London might look, although detailed plans have not yet been seen.

How the Chelsea Barracks site in London might look, although detailed plans have not yet been seen.

Outline planning permission has been granted to Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Company for the development of the former Chelsea Barracks site in London.

Plans for the 5,18 ha site were shelved for a while following the controversial intervention of Prince Charles. Now the project has been approved by Westminster City Council after a period of public consultation.

The site, which was purchased from the Ministry of Defence in 2008 for £ 959 million (€ 1,07 billion), will have up to 448 houses and flats. Of these, 123 will be classed as "affordable", with 60 for elderly care.

Qatari Diar will be making a contribution of £ 78 million (€ 87,4 million) to Westminster City Council's affordable housing fund. There will also be £ 23 million (€ 25,8 million) to build and equip a sports centre on the site for the local community.

A spokesman for the developer, which owns the site through its wholly-owned subsidiary Project Blue, said, "The Masterplan will reconnect the site to the surrounding areas of Belgravia and Chelsea. It envisages an exemplary new integrated residential neighbourhood in a garden setting, combining houses and apartments with local convenience shops and restaurants, a multi-purpose community/cultural centre, a public sports and fitness facility, and a medical centre."

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