Home West London Developer pulls £1bn Simpson Haugh hotel rather than face inquiry | News

Developer pulls £1bn Simpson Haugh hotel rather than face inquiry | News

Kensington Forum hotel

The developer behind Simpson Haugh’s controversial £1bn redevelopment of Richard Seifert’s 29-storey Kensington Forum Hotel has withdrawn the appliance regardless of profitable the backing of the mayor of London final yr.

The twice-approved scheme, for hotel investor Queensgate, was referred to as in by housing secretary Robert Jenrick in the beginning of the yr, with a planning inquiry scheduled for later this spring.

Kensington Forum Hotel scheme

The plans for a 749-bed hotel, 340 serviced residences and 62 reasonably priced properties on the Cromwell Road website in west London had been green-lit by Sadiq Khan in October final yr after a prolonged battle.

Designed by architect Simpson Haugh, the scheme consisted of three buildings – a 30-storey tower, a 22-storey tower and a seven-storey block.

It was refused by the native authority, Kensington & Chelsea, and twice permitted by the mayor – after his first approval was efficiently challenged by the council.

The authentic brutalist-style tower was designed by Seifert, the architect behind the Centrepoint and NatWest towers in the course of London.

In a letter to the planning inspectorate, seen by Building Design and written by legislation agency Dentons on behalf of Queensgate, the agency stated it had “determined to withdraw the appliance” and that the inspectorate ought to “please due to this fact deal with the appliance as withdrawn”.

The letter didn’t provide any causes behind the choice to withdraw the scheme, which was being introduced ahead by developer Rockwell on Queensgate’s behalf.

The redevelopment had been vigorously opposed by native residents and the council, who had argued that it was not of sufficiently excessive design high quality to justify its top within the location.

Patrick O’Connell, head of resorts at Queensgate Investments, stated he might “verify that the planning software has been withdrawn” but additionally declined to present any causes for the choice.

The agency wouldn’t say whether or not it should now search to work up a brand new scheme. Prior to the coronavirus outbreak, Queensgate had instructed Savills and Eastdil Secured to discover sale choices for the location, which it acquired for £350m in 2015. That course of was paused because of the pandemic.

>> Also learn: Further blow for Simpson Haugh’s £1bn Seifert hotel as ministers wade in


The resolution comes simply weeks after the total adoption of the brand new London Plan, which incorporates vital adjustments to guidelines governing the place tall buildings could be positioned, giving extra energy to boroughs to find out insurance policies.

Michael Bach, chair of the planning committee on the Kensington Society, stated the physique and 25 native residents’ associations had been preventing the scheme for over three years.

He stated: “Residents are massively relieved that the appliance has been withdrawn and we sincerely hope that it will mark a watershed for tasks with tall buildings in delicate areas that are opposite to coverage within the new London Plan.”