Private rental landlord Grainger has won consent for a major build-to-rent development in Seven Sisters Road, Tottenham. The scheme is part of a growing momentum regenerating the Tottenham area, that includes the redevelopment of the Tottenham Hotspur football ground.
The approval will see the redevelopment of the council’s own offices in Apex House, currently on the site. Grainger bought the long leasehold on the site from the council in 2014.
The project includes a landmark 23 storey tower, alongside a lower seven storey block and will include 163 homes and 9,000 sq ft of commercial space. Of the residential units, 39% will be for intermediate rent, with the balance rented at open market prices.
Councillor Alan Strickland, cabinet member for housing and regeneration, said: “Bringing more than 100 new homes to the heart of Tottenham is a massive vote of confidence in the future of Haringey and its key role in delivering London’s growth.”
The project is part of the Wards Corner redevelopment, which has been the subject of some local opposition, with residents keen to instead see the former department store on the site reused. Grainger is already working on an earlier phase of development, which won approval in 2013 but was subject to a judicial review claim from local residents. A judge determined the review had no basis, and so that phase, including 196 homes, is being brought forward.
“This high-quality build-to-rent development will deliver much-needed new affordable and private rental homes for Haringey, substantial improvements to the public realm, alongside well-designed and modern space for the nearby Seven Sisters market, all of which will significantly benefit the local area,” said David Walters, development director at Grainger.
Grainger has been refocusing its strategy to become a major private rental sector landlord, and to that end is buying up projects both in London and in other UK cities, either for development or to asset manage.
In February, Grainger bought a 94 flat investment at Kew Bridge Court, on a site opposite Kew Bridge train station, though its GRIP property fund that it owns with co-investor APG. At the time, chief executive Helen Gordon commented: “This portfolio demonstrates further acceleration of growth in our PRS business and the support we have from our investment partner, APG, to continue to expand GRIP’s portfolio in London and the South East. This was a rare opportunity to acquire a stabilised asset of scale, in one of our prime target markets.”
The company is also building in Canning Town, where its Hallsville Quarter project will deliver 134 homes into the private rental market in autumn 2017.
Also in the area, a new station at Lea Bridge has just reopened, after being closed in 1985. The new overground station links the area to Stratford and Tottenham Hale via the Overground line, and was in part funded by section 106 contributions.
Waltham Forest council leader Chris Robbins said the infrastructure investment would immediately trigger development: “We already have plans for nearly 3,000 new homes within a quarter of a mile of this station, all based on this station opening.”
LPA Perspective: Grainger has had a rough ride in its attempts to help regenerate Tottenham. The locals put up a strong rearguard action that now looks to have petered out.
The latest approval combines the delivery of the new housing the area needs, and the modernisation of the council’s own accommodation and services. An influx of private renters, driven into the area by the capital’s booming economy, will do no harm in helping to improve an area that is already set to see major changes as the Tottenham Hotspur football ground is redeveloped.
Elsewhere in the borough, the creation of a new station at Lea Bridge shows just how important public transport infrastructure has become, in opening up pockets of land around the capital for new development.