We want a better plan for the former Bingo Hall on Hackney Road
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This petition of 364 names was submitted to Hackney planning department on April 5 and the decision was deferred so the design could be improved and the height of the 'podium' level reduced.
The revised design is due to be decided at a second planning committee meeting: 6.30pm Wednesday 5 April Hackney Town Hall E8 1EA. Please come.
There is only a very minor difference in the bulk (80 sq m), a strip from the top floor of the 'podium' level has been removed. Due to the developers' profit requirements, they have also reduced the affordable housing by one flat. The grid design of the lower levels has changed in scale.
If you want to say that you still object to the plans please write to firstname.lastname@example.org
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Hackney Property Holdings Ltd and Mayfair-based LBS Properties funded by U.S. firm GreenOak LLP are the developers of the Bingo Hall. While everyone accepted that it would be redeveloped following the closure of Mecca Bingo in 2014 and its sale, the proposed demolition and replacement with a square generic block and tower containing predominantly luxury flats is a plan that fundamentally ignores its context.
We agree with London Assembly Member Jeanette Arnold who said: "Whatever new development replaces the bingo hall should ensure that the community spirit that the bingo hall fostered remains, and that local people feel the benefit."
We continue to object to the plans for these main reasons :
- The building ignores the rules that should apply in the Hackney Road conservation area: its height, bulk, colour and materials are out of keeping with everything around it.
- It will block light from neighbouring properties, due to the added bulk.
- The Bingo Hall is being lost yet the scheme contains no new community space, which is contrary to Hackney's policy of protecting social and community space particularly for older members of the community in this case.
- 5 social rented flats out of 83 with 11 shared ownership means under 20% is "affordable housing", well below the requirement for a major development of this type with the lack of genuinely affordable housing pushing people further out of London. Hackney's house prices have risen by 700% in 20 years.
- There cannot be a realistic appraisal of the figures used to justify this level of social housing provision, as the viability appraisal is confidential.
- Many people are against the demolition of the Bingo Hall, part of local memory and which has the potential to provide a new arts venue. It opened in 1938 as the 1,920 seat Odeon cinema and in 1961 was the first purpose-built cinema in the country to be transformed into a bingo hall.
Planning application no. 2016/3602
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