Features

Speak up ahead of major changes in Edgware

Edgware town centre being regenerated with up to 5,000 new homes – a new community-led project wants residents voices to be at the front of this
By Tom Stadden

Credit – Edgware Voice

Very soon all eyes will be on Edgware, “Barnet’s only major town centre”, as regeneration is set to begin. Most residents agree the town centre is in desperate need of renewal after years of neglect.

In December 2020 Barnet and Harrow Councils published a joint Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) for the town centre which received 87% support online. The SPD pointed out Edgware’s potential to become a major retail destination, as well as a site for 5,000 new homes.

However, when it comes to development Barnet Council is not viewed favourably. Over the past decade applications have eased in with suburbs transformed by overdevelopment and high rise buildings; most notably in Colindale, West Hendon, Mill Hill and soon Cricklewood which will see huge towers on the B&Q site.

It was these concerns that stood out in the public consultation: “please do not allow high-rise buildings to deface our neighbourhood. Apart from destroying the character of the area, this will also increase the pressure on our overcrowded roads.”

Another resident says they’re “happy for redevelopment, very against the skyline being filled. Lower density not tower blocks”, whilst another remarks “Edgware is not Colindale.”

Despite these concerns, the amended SPD (June 2021) retains Edgware town centre’s label as ‘potential for buildings higher than eight storeys, and for very tall buildings of over 14 storeys, subject to exceptional design quality’.

That’s where we come in. Just a month ago ‘Edgware Voice’ launched our ‘Future Edgware’ project. Ahead of regeneration we want to raise awareness of the plans to as many local residents as possible. Already Edgware has seen a monster 17-storey tower block approved under the radar – we cannot let something the size of regeneration slip past so easily.

It’s crucial that residents voices are at the forefront of town centre changes. Too often public opinion has come second to housing targets and development deals – but Edgware deserves so much better.

To begin with, we’re seeking to collect as many resident voices as we can to maximize a community response to any future proposals. We’ve done this by launching our website and social media pages.

Join us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram for regular updates and opportunities to speak up. But first, have a look at the proposals via our website, share your comments and stay connected as the project is about to begin.

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