More than 2,000 people have already had their say on the plans for the regeneration of Old Kent Road since the council started consulting in 2015.
In December 2020, the council approved an updated version of the Old Kent Road Area Action Plan which is now out for consultation.
This latest version of the plan incorporates significant changes in response to all the feedback received from the local community since the last plan was published in 2017.
The following is a summary of the main changes that have been made in the updated 2020 plan.
The updated plan gives greater emphasis to the council’s commitment to put local residents, and communities at the heart of regeneration. This is reflected throughout the plan, as well as in a new, additional section titled ‘Connecting Communities’.
The updated plan includes a new, bespoke youth policy and the importance of young people to the regeneration plans, as a whole, is reflected throughout the document. This includes commitments to deliver a new, state of the art youth facility; a community space for young people at 231 Old Kent Road and new youth facilities at Frensham Street and on the Tustin Estate. The plan also recognises the potential for more further education in the area including a higher education institution.
Environment and the Climate Emergency
The updated plan includes a new policy to ensure the regeneration of Old Kent Road is carbon neutral. Measures include car-free developments; encouraging biodiversity in new developments and a commitment to the District Heating Network.
Combined with green transport improvements, such as the Bakerloo line extension, these will help to ensure the regeneration is aligned with the council’s commitment to become a net zero carbon borough by 2030. The council has also commissioned a specialist air quality study to inform the delivery and monitoring of its commitment to reduce air pollution.
The updated plan includes more park space than proposed in 2017. This includes more space around the gasholder (Livesey Park) and an additional, new park at the council depot on Frensham Street. The plan also includes the closure of part of Verney Road to accommodate the Surrey Canal Park (with access and servicing moved within the site).
A new park space has also been earmarked for what is currently the site of a car park at the rear of the Tesco petrol station and the updated plan also identifies potential for converting the Bricklayers Arms flyover into a new, elevated park.
Town centre and high streets
The updated plan now includes a proposal for two district town centres, a commitment to the 15 minute city concept and new commitments to help revitalise the high street (including a new ground floor strategy policy and a new, high street character section).
The updated plan includes new proposals for five new conservation areas. It also identifies all the listed and heritage buildings in the area which will be preserved.
The updated plan includes changes to the tall buildings strategy. The tallest, Tier One, category, which originally comprised buildings over 30 storeys, has been revised down to comprise those over 20. Tier Two now comprises buildings between 16 and 20 storeys (down from between 16 and 25 storeys). And Tier Three now comprises buildings up to 15 storeys rather than 16.
The policy has been updated to ensure that the design of all Tier One buildings demonstrates an exceptional contribution to the regeneration of the area as well as to the council’s vision for a people-centred and family-friendly Old Kent Road.
The updated plan remains committed to delivering 20,000 new homes, at least 35 per cent of which will be affordable homes. But it also strengthens the commitment to delivering larger, four-bedroom family homes.
Bakerloo line extension
The updated plan remains committed to the Bakerloo line extension and includes new detail on the phasing of the 9,500 additional, new homes that the extension will help deliver.