On this basis both the mix of units and affordable housing provision are considered acceptable in the revised proposal.
Impact on Living Conditions/Standards
As submitted the scheme raised considerations in terms of the amenity of future residents occupying the development as regards the number of solely north facing units and privacy distances between habitable rooms.
Following revision, the number of units with single north facing aspects has been reduced and the internal layouts changed so that there are three separates access cores to the flats and no central corridor. There are now only 4 (previously 124) internal north facing only units. These are located at fourth floor levels where there will be reasonable levels of light, and for all units day and sunlight standards are achieved.
With the amendments, there are now no main living rooms facing directly towards each other across the courtyards. There remain some living rooms that face bedrooms across courtyards at a distance of 18.5 metres. This falls short of the 21 metre privacy distance normally sought, but since this is a scheme that seeks to make maximum use of an existing building it is not considered that the living conditions created would be so defective as to warrant refusal on this ground.
The change to the form of the new terrace on Third Avenue has no material implications for the amenity of neighbouring residential buildings. The revisions to the three ‘Pods’ on the northern boundary involve relatively minor re-positioning. The drawings also suggest an increase in the height of the boundary wall to the car park and its location closer to the existing flats to the north. Clarification is being sought on this point but these flats are oriented east-west and therefore at right angles to the site, and the degree of change form the previous approval is not considered to be such as to unduly affect the living conditions of the neighbouring occupiers. A condition is recommended to cover ventilation of the car park and treatment of the boundary wall.
The revised scheme is therefore considered to be acceptable in amenity terms.
The proposed addition of a 6th floor in the originally submitted revised scheme was regarded by officers as contentious due to the resultant increase in bulk of the building in spite of the set back of this. It has now been deleted, and the 5th floor has been redesigned to incorporate a set back from the edge of the roof as in the existing approval.
The changes to the Third Avenue block create a more overtly modern design treatment. This is considered to be acceptable in this location, and the increased bulk resulting from the sheer top storey is adequately compensated for by the overall reduction in height and the coherent nature of the design approach.
The previous permission was accompanied by a Transport Assessment which has been revised with the current application. In the approval, 50 spaces were to be provided fro the retained office element in Bromyard House and 71 spaces for the new office building and 320 for the residential. The current application originally sought to introduce a managed parking scheme to enable sharing of spaces between the two uses, but following objection raised to this Transport Services the proposal has reverted to allocated parking. The office provision therefore remains unchanged, and the parking for the new office building is already being implemented.
With the increase in number of residential units, and no increase in residential parking, the ratio of provision has fallen. Previously the relatively low level of parking was accepted on the basis of emerging policy on low car housing in areas such as this where controlled parking schemes are in place. These circumstances are unchanged, and it is considered that the level of residential parking is consistent with the support given by local, London-wide and national policy to reducing car reliance in accessible localities.
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