Croydon Conservatives - A Croydon to be proud of
Home
News & Local Issues
Videos Videos
In Touch Newsletters
Parliaments & GLA 
Councillors 
Croydon Central
Croydon South
Croydon North
Conservative Future
National Site
Get Involved
Petitions 
Privacy Policy & Cookies 
 
 The Fairfield Blog
 
Cllr  Vidhi  Mohan
Cllr  Helen  Pollard
Cllr  Sue  Winborn
 

Fairfield and College Green
25/02/2017 10:30:00......Posted by Helen Pollard

 
 

Went to the Planning Committee meeting where the plan for College Green and Fairfield Halls was recommended for approval.  

I question the wisdom of putting the Fairfield application into the same planning meeting as a number of other local developments.  Far more time was needed to consider an application this big.  There was an 86-page report prepared about this application and it was hard to give proper consideration to the many aspects of the development given the lack of time.  Anyone looking for more details on the Council's website would have found around 300 pdf documents (most labelled with a code, rather than description) so it was very difficult to work out what was going on.  I wonder whether all this was a deliberate ploy to 'bury' the details so that close scrutiny was made as difficult as possible. 

Whilst I am supportive of the redevelopment of the area and Fairfield Halls I have major concerns about the direction the development is taking.  The housing is very dense and corners seem to have been cut in order to maximise revenue.  Here is a copy of my speech.

I am speaking as a ward councillor for Fairfield Ward and also the Shadow Cabinet Member for Culture Leisure and Sport.

I would like to start by saying that I am pleased we finally have a planning application for the first phase of the Fairfield redevelopment even though it is seven months after the closure of Fairfield Halls.   I have great concerns about the redevelopment of Fairfield Halls given that this application his being submitted so late in the day.  I hope it is still able to open in 2018 so that residents can once again enjoy top quality events in this world class venue.  I also hope that the acoustics of the Concert Hall are not adversely affected and that community groups who want to use Fairfield Halls won't be priced out by a commercial operator who only wants to make a profit.

I'll now move on to the detail of the application.

I accept that there is a need to build homes in Croydon, particularly in this area which  is so close to good transport links, however I think a high price is being paid to squeeze in so many homes.  By which I mean that, in places this development is so dense it will materially affect the daily lives of residents.  

In a throwaway comment at 3.3 the report says that despite daylight and sunlight conditions being below the recommended standards the overall level of amenity for future occupiers would be acceptable. 

But is it acceptable that 36% of habitable rooms will have less than the recommended amount of daylight?

Is it acceptable that instead of half the amenity area for phase 1A receiving 2 hours of sunlight on the benchmark day of 21st March, only 14% will get two hours sunlight?

Is it acceptable that the courtyards for blocks 4 and 5 will receive no sunlight on 21st March and in block 6, only 36% of the area will get the minimum of 2 hours?  Below the recommended 50%?  It is hard to imagine any plants surviving in these courtyards, so they could potentially become concrete no-go areas.

I worry that the flats on lower levels and the communal areas will be dark and gloomy which is not a great outlook for residents.  Their experience of living in these flats will be adversely affected by the poor design and density of development.

Other things that concern me about this development are:

·        Firstly:  The lack of family housing.  6% rather than the recommended 20%.  This will really affect the feel of the place, with fewer children.  It could become a dormitory for city workers, rather than a vibrant community.

·        Secondly: Separation distance between blocks B and D are only 15-16 metres.  Once again, a dark and gloomy prospect for residents

·        Third:  The lack of onsite play space for children.  Ignoring recommended levels

·        Fourth:  The excessive use of concrete in the design.  Croydon has a reputation for being a concrete jungle because of the prevalence of 60s brutalist architecture and the use of bare concrete.  We should be making every effort to steer clear of this approach, especially as the applicant is actually the council.  The proposed design will date and look tatty very quickly.

·        Fifth:  The loss of 37 of the 50 trees on the site.  I hope these are replaced

·        Sixth:  A two thirds reduction in the number of parking spaces.  This will have far reaching implications for people who used to use the car park and also for residents.

·        Seventh: The fact that the council is ignoring GLA advice about the bridge link.

·        Eighth: The lack of comment from the Police’s ‘designing out crime’ officer

Finally, I would like to mention the local parks.  The report refers to the fact that residents can use local parks at Park Hill and Queen's Gardens.  There has been no investment in Park Hill Park despite money being set aside for doing this.  Will there be some s106 / CIL money from this development to upgrade the facilities at Park Hill Park and Queen's Gardens to cope with this increased usage? 

Notwithstanding the comments, I am happy to see that something is finally happening to move this development forward.  I support the overall idea of this application, but I have some major misgivings about the impact of this dense development on future residents.

Note: the photo shows the new college building (two blocks connected by a bridge) attached to the back of Fairfield Halls, which is to the right of the picture.  On the left is one of the residential blocks.

 

 
Return to Fairfield's main page
 
 Other Blog Posts
 

Meeting residents
21/10/2017 17:58:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

 
 

Spent another morning meeting residents in the Chatsworth Road area.  Picked up more issues to be followed up including the overgrown vegitation by some council flats.

 

 


 

Meeting residents
19/10/2017 17:56:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

Spent the evening meeting residents in the Chatsworth Road area.  There were various issues that I will be following up e.g. streetlights, registering to vote and planning problems. 

 


 

Children's Services Council Meeting
16/10/2017 17:53:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

Spent the eveing reviewing the work that is being carried out to ensure Chilren's Services keep Croydon's children safe.  Thie follows on from the Ofsted Inspection that found the service in Croydon to be inadequte.  C

 


 

Dance and Plants
14/10/2017 16:25:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

 
 

Went to the Dance Umbrella performance outside the Town Hall.  It was an interesting display in and around a shipping container which was unusual!  Good to see so many people in Queen's Gardens enjoying a bit of culture in the lovely autumn weather.  Saffron Central in Queen's Gardens was rehoming plants so I picked up a few for the garden.  

 


 

Meeting residents
14/10/2017 16:23:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

Spent the morning meeting residents in the Church Road area.  A number of them asked for help with council-related issues so I will be following these up.

 


 

Public Meeting
09/10/2017 16:19:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

Sat on the panel at a public meeting in 'Tomorrow' in South Croydon.  The meeting was so popular we ran out of room and unfortunately not everyone could fit in.  We will hold other similar meetings in future so they come along.  

The idea of the meeting was to brief residents on changes that are happening in Croydon e.g. Westfield update, planning, housing, parks, and to listen to their views.  There were some good questions from the floor and it was good to hear about the issues people feel strongly about.  

 


 

Parks Meeting
03/10/2017 16:17:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

Attended a meeting of the Friends of Parks Forum.  It was interesting to hear about the changes being made in the management of parks by the council.  A bit concerned about the impact the changes will have on our parks.  

 


 

Seats
03/10/2017 16:14:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

 
 

Went to the David Lean cinema with Cllr Winborn to see the newly refubished seats that were paid for by the Fairfield Councillors community budget.  They were very comfortable!

Also had a fascinating look behind the scenes in the projection room.  There are digital projectors and film projectors.

 


 

South Croydon
30/09/2017 16:13:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

Joined the Croham councillors as they met residents to find out their views on the loss of Green Belt status for Coombe Playing Fields

 


 

Indian Dancing
20/09/2017 16:48:00.......Posted by Helen Pollard

 
 

Attended the launch event for the Mela which is taking place later this month.  There was some excellent dancing, including dancing from Kerala.

 


 

See older blog posts

 

 
 Read our newsletter
Download our latest newsletter:
May 2014 - Local Election special
 
 Contact Us
Please do contact us with any issues or concerns you may have. We answer all our constituents' correspondence and value your comments. If you want your concern addressed by your local team, please follow the link above.
020 8660 0491
 
 Older Blog Posts
16/09/2017
Open House weekend
16/09/2017
Tour of Fairfield Halls
13/09/2017
Roadworks St Peters Road
13/09/2017
Licensing Committee
06/09/2017
Planning Meeting
05/09/2017
Changes to the High Street
29/08/2017
John Ruskin College
28/08/2017
Parks Master Planning
07/08/2017
Culture Director
30/07/2017
Planning meeting
30/07/2017
Parks Consultation
17/07/2017
Cabinet Meeting
15/07/2017
Pride in Croydon
12/07/2017
John Ruskin College
11/07/2017
Culture in Croydon
06/07/2017
Exchange Square
06/07/2017
Turn Around Centre
27/06/2017
Licensing Training
26/06/2017
Council meeting
22/06/2017
Chatsworth Road Conservation Area
22/06/2017
Planning Meeting - Mulgrave Road
21/06/2017
John Ruskin College
19/06/2017
Fairfield Halls
13/06/2017
Croham Road
06/06/2017
Surgery
30/05/2017
Local Plan Hearing
30/05/2017
Park Hill Park
29/05/2017
Overflowing bin
28/05/2017
Issues in Old Town
24/05/2017
Heathfield Gardens
 
 
 
 
© Copyright Croydon Conservatives 2000 - 2017