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BGY concept design feedback

Updated: Jan 19

Many thanks to those of you who gave us feedback at our concept design events and online in December. 28 people attended the events in person, and more than 100 of you viewed the digital version of the exhibition.

On the whole, we received mainly positive feedback on both the emerging concept designs and the community brief.

Feedback on the proposals:

We shared 2 concepts, a residential-led concept and an employment-led concept. 90% of feedback was positive about aspects of all the proposals and almost half favoured the employment-led concept.

The respondents who liked, or liked most of the proposals (26%) were broadly positive, seeing value in the site being changed for the better by either concept and appreciating the efforts being made to involve the community and incorporate their priorities. Some were more tentatively positive but keen to understand more details, specifically around how industrial disruption and traffic would be mitigated.

Almost half (48%) favoured the employment-led concept, feeling that lower rise buildings, higher amount of commercial/ leisure space as well as increase in jobs created would be more beneficial to the community, creating a cultural destination that would compliment rather than compete with forthcoming residential developments. Many also felt that the site’s proximity to industrial uses didn’t lend itself to having a residential component.

The 16% who favoured the residential led concept saw the positive impact on safety brought by ‘life’ on site 24 hours a day, and felt it would mean that industrial uses would need to operate to an even higher standard of ‘neighbourliness’.

Those who expressed mainly negative feedback on the scheme (10%) felt that the development was too dense, residential buildings were too high or they perceived a loss of open views and natural sense of wildness on the Greenway.

Feedback on the community brief:

We shared a summary of community priorities which we have gathered from more than 500 local people forming the community brief for the project. 81% of respondents agreed with the priorities and the majority felt we were meeting them in full or in part.

67% of respondents thought we were meeting the brief through proposed steps to enclose, screen and mitigate noise. A further 33% felt we were partially meeting the brief, but wanted more details and specifics on how it would work.

63% of those who answered felt that we were achieving objectives, with positive feedback on the improvements to the Greenway and Marshgate Lane, and additional steps to protect biodiversity and introduce new public space.

33% felt this was being met in part, with reservations about the scheme’s ability to improve the area around Wick Lane Junction/ A12 crossing and the impact of increased HGV traffic in that area.

4% felt it didn’t meet the brief as there wasn’t a west-east pedestrian route from the A12 through to the greenway. (Unfortunately because of Industrial uses on Bow West it is not possible to ensure a safe public access).

63% of responses indicated we were meeting the brief for this in full with 37% feeling it was being met in part. Both long term and meanwhile ideas shown relating to this theme received a lot of positive feedback.

Here the only area where people were uncertain about meeting the brief was around the amount of affordable housing that could be committed to at this stage, which in turn furthered people’s preference for the employment-led scenario.

Outcomes and next steps

Progressing the Employment + Leisure-led concept:

Based on feedback from the community, stakeholders, and the local planning authorities, Network Rail will be progressing the employment + leisure-led concept. This means that residential will not form part of the development proposals going forward.

We will continue working with stakeholders and key groups over the coming months, working towards submitting an outline planning application in early spring. There will be a pre-planning exhibition roughly 1 month prior to this and we will be in touch with the date for this event.

Responding to key concerns raised:

Traffic on Wick Lane Junction/ the A12 and more clarity on HGV routes - We will be able to offer more information at future events in response to these concerns.

A12 pedestrian crossing - This falls outside of Network Rail’s power to control as the A12 belongs to Tower Hamlets / TfL. We are in discussions with them about the site and how it would work with any future plans they have for the road.

Concerns about other kinds of industry on site - The site is currently used by 2 concrete batching plants and a spoil processing company who all make use of the rail head. Space for these Strategic Industrial operators will be re-provided and modernised alongside spaces for other forms of lighter industry, workspace and leisure space. We are not proposing additional concrete plants or other forms of heavy industry on-site.

Impact on biodiversity/ natural habitats along The Greenway: Extensive surveys have and will continue to be carried out around habitats on and around the site. To get planning permission we need to demonstrate a biodiversity net gain which we are working towards. The site includes a nature reserve which we would be extending and any habitat loss as a result of the development would need to be offset and re-provided within the site or nearby.



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