Fight for the future of Brixton: Texan DJ billionaire plans 20-story skyscraper

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Residents vow to stop the proposal of Taylor McWilliams to build on a site rising above the popular street market of Electric Avenue

The battle’s outcome could help shape the future skyline of London.

There is a Texas millionaire DJ and land developer in one corner who has proposed plans for a 20-story office building in Brixton, next to a conservation area and the popular Electric Avenue. Hondo, the property company of Taylor McWilliams, which owns much of the Brixton market, says the project will create 2,000 jobs in the area and produce £ 2. Every year. In the other corner is a group of residents whose fierce resistance has been joined by Historic England and the Victorian Community, who wrote to London Mayor Sadiq Khan this month that in a post-Covid world in which more individuals will operate from home, the plan would be of little use. When Hondo served notice to leave a successful small shop, Nour Cash & Carry, McWilliams, a member of the DJ collective Housekeeping, initially drew the wrath of local residents. But the store will remain, even if relocated to a new location nearby, after a social media campaign called Save Nour – endorsed by celebrities like rock singer Skin of Skunk Anansie. McWilliams is now facing more local opposition after Lambeth council approved his plans for the tower last month, despite almost 8,000 people signing an online petition against it. The Save Nour campaign wants the mayor to intervene, a step sponsored by the Victorian Society: “This area of Brixton has avoided the intense development that has blighted many of London’s historic town centers,” said Olivia Stockdale, the heritage specialist of the society. Next to this iconic location, the plans to construct a 20-story building indicate a failure to consider and react to the area’s context. While buildings of this height might be appropriate elsewhere in London, this is obviously not a position where that is valid. The proposed construction will overshadow nearby buildings, including historic Electric Avenue, which was the first street to be illuminated on the market.

An email circulated that seemed to indicate that the green light had been issued by Khan.

Hondo told the Observer in response to the concerns of residents that it was setting up a community liaison committee “to figure out how the local community can get involved in the project, including involvement through the community space.”

The company reported that the plan was backed by more than 1,000 local people, mostly from the area, and a significant proportion of existing Brixton Market traders. Victorian Society director Joe O’Donnell urged Khan to consider whether London needed more office space. “This is an opportunity to respond to what the local community wants.”

If a massive Brixton office tower has ever been really needed or profitable, its business future now seems uncertain, as it is unknown if London will ever return to previous levels of office demand in a post-Covid-19 home-working environment. In order to remind him of his decision, we submitted our appeal to the mayor. Hondo said that there is a “Hondo said there is a ” In a statement, the company said, “The company said in a statement, ”

While jobs are rising twice as fast as in Lambeth, the Brixton vacancy rate is virtually zero.

Studies performed by Savills show that the post-Covid office space scenario would be quite close to the pre-Covid situation. ‘Regeneration’ is too often an unequal fight between local citizens and global finance | Anna MintonContinue readingO’Donnell said the proposal would set a precedent if introduced to open the region and possibly other places in the capital to more high-risk areas. The character is becoming increasingly uncommon, and that’s why we’re calling for it to be spared from the conservation area. Hondo emphasized, however, that new construction would only provide the region with new development.

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