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Front-page headline about an ‘invasion’ of high-rises was a bit of a tall story

01 March, 2019

An illustration of how the City North development could look in Finsbury Park

• LAST week’s sensational front-page headline about an “invasion” of high-rises was indeed a bit of a tall story, (Fears for Islington skyline as invasion of high-rise towers looms, February 22).

Islington’s draft Local Plan sets out some specific locations in Islington where tall buildings might in principle be allowed. This follows last year’s Tall Buildings Study, which found these locations might be appropriate; something that was misreported in last week’s article.

A core part of the Local Plan is to deliver the genuinely affordable homes that are so badly needed in Islington, where too many people are trapped in insecure or overcrowded housing, or have no home at all.

The new Local Plan would in principle allow more high-quality, tall buildings on specific sites if they met council planning policies, including those on providing 50 per cent genuinely affordable housing, and on providing employment space.

Any future proposal for a tall building on one of the sites would also need to meet all other relevant policies, as well as technical impact assessments, including loss of sunlight, daylight, privacy, overlooking and impact on nearby heritage.

A proposal that did not comply with relevant policies, and/or caused unacceptable impacts, could and would be refused.

The draft Local Plan, of course, remains a draft. We welcome the representations from the Islington Society and Highbury Community Association, and these will be carefully considered with all other representations made during our recent consultation.

There will be further consultation later this year before the plan goes to an independent planning inspector for their consideration.

CLLR DIARMAID WARD
Executive member for housing and development, Islington Council

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