Wednesday 28 September 2016

UK minister gets drawn into bitter Taggart property row

Published 18/09/2016 | 02:30

London Mayor Sadiq Khan has decided that Merton should determine the future of the plan (Stock picture)
London Mayor Sadiq Khan has decided that Merton should determine the future of the plan (Stock picture)

The bitter row over rival proposals from Datalex chairman Paschal Taggart and Galliard Homes for a site in London has escalated further, after a London borough council asked the UK government to intervene.

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The site is located near the boundary between Merton and Wandsworth boroughs. Merton Council backs the Galliard plan - which would see the construction of a new football stadium housing AFC Wimbledon and some 600 new homes. London Mayor Sadiq Khan has decided that Merton should determine the future of the plan.

Now Wandsworth Borough Council has asked Communities Secretary Sajid Javid to intervene.

"Wandsworth's view is that because the site lies on the borough boundary and its redevelopment will have a significant impact on both areas, the application needs independent scrutiny," the council said.

"The scheme will create unreasonable pressure on the area's transport network, with increased traffic congestion on roads and more passengers accessing already busy and crowded rail services."

Taggart's plan would involve the redevelopment of London's last remaining greyhound track and the construction of around 250 new homes, with up to 50pc made up of so-called "affordable housing". He blasted Khan's decision to return the decision to Merton, saying this amounted to a breach of a pledge that he would set a target that 50pc of all new homes would have to be affordable housing. The Galliard plan proposed 9.6pc of the new homes would be affordable.

"With Sadiq in charge and the Brexit decision, I can see nothing but difficulties for the London economy over the next five years," Taggart said.

"To the local residents both in Merton and Wandsworth, I hope your serious concerns... are not realised… Yes, I am a very bad loser," he added.

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