Well following on from my last blog about Croydon missing out on the next cycle, I may have to retract that statement as it now looks like Berkeley Homes are set to kick off their 45 storey, 755 residential unit scheme on Wellesley Road.
An announcement from the developer stated "Berkeley Homes is delighted to confirm its intention to commence works on its Saffron Square project in mid-August." This comes soon after they submitted a new application only last month in order to increase the residential offering and decrease the office space.
In 2007 the scheme was permitted for 667 private units and 72 social units. This revised application now seeks permission for 719 private units and 36 social units, which will all be shared ownership. Social units will be provided off-site.
Berkeley Homes in their revised planning statement state the usual spiel about needing this new tenure mix in order to progress construction and for the scheme to be financially viable in the current climate. The question is will Croydon Council accept this in order for a landmark, gateway scheme to progress or say no and leave the site vacant and derelict since it was demolished in 1993.
This is how their planning statement read..."Due to the recent market conditions the scheme approved in July 2008 has been in abeyance for the past two years. During this time Berkeley Homes has been progressing the design development of the revised scheme as a priority project with the intention that construction, in accordance with the current planning permission, will commence in July 2010. However in order to underpin the economics of the scheme and reduce the risk of further deferment of the project, Berkeley Homes is proposing to make relatively modest changes to the approved scheme."