Lambeth regeneration scheme voted down by local residents

28 Sep 00
The London Borough of Lambeth has been forced to shelve a £440m public-private partnership regeneration scheme after residents voted against it.

29 September 2000

The scheme, to build a new urban village in Kennington in London, was the largest brownfield regeneration proposal in the UK.

However, 60% of residents from the Ethelred Estate last week voted against the proposals to redevelop the area. The turnout was 73%.

The plan, called Project Vauxhall, involved the demolition of 900 homes and a large secondary school, which would then be replaced with 2,500 private flats, 600 council homes and a smaller secondary school to be built over the next 14 years.

But residents were unimpressed with the fact that the plan would result in less council housing being available, and in many cases, smaller than the existing homes.

The residents' campaign group, Save Ethelred Homes, pointed out that the loss of 300 council homes did not appear to be the best option when Lambeth's waiting list tops 28,000 and 950 families are in temporary accommodation. Lambeth has decided to put the development plans on the backburner.

Commenting on the vote, Lambeth's executive member for regeneration, Cllr Kirsty McHugh, said the residents took a full and active part in the process.

'Project Vauxhall has been tenant-led, and it is appropriate that local people should be in charge of their own destiny. The project was instigated by tenants, developed through a tenant-led project board, and tenants voted to have the final say. They had an exciting choice placed before them and they have now made their decision which Lambeth will respect.'

The proposed redevelopment of the troubled Lilian Baylis school has also been shelved by the council. The school, which has been in special measures for more than four years, has 600 children on the roll but places for 1,500. The council said the issue was being reconsidered.


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