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Monday, 19 August 2019

Argenta House Proposed for Development

I see that Brent Planning officers are recommending a very large new tower block in Stonebridge.  It would be close to Stonebridge station and be 28 stories tall, as opposed to the current two storey building.  This is a surprising departure from the planning guidance of the Council which, in a legal process fully signed off, sought to concentrate tall buildings in the five growth areas of Alperton, Church End, Colindale, Kilburn and Wembley.  Of course that is guidance given to the Committee but it should be given significant weight.  As far as I can see the officers do not comment on this.

It is also striking that the planners intend a controlled parking zone (CPZ) to be introduced here.  Stonebridge and nearby Tokyngton have traditionally resisted CPZs even though parking in southern Tokyngton has been extremely crowded for many years. 

Sunday, 18 August 2019

Dawn Butler MP Seeks to Protect Central Middlesex Services

Dawn Butler MP is seeking to protect Central Middlesex Services at the Urgent Care Centre.  It is a pity that Brent Council did not follow this lead earlier in the NHS plan's history.  The plan is widely regarded as unsuccessful, and has not been effectively opposed by Brent Council for its own reasons.  This despite the negative impacts on Harlesden and Stonebridge. 

Dawn Butler's petition is available on her web site. 

Saturday, 17 August 2019

A Return of Estate Agent Boards

I gather that the Kensal Green and Queens Park areas are likely to see an exploding number of estate agent advertisements on billboards in the area.  This is a result of an income generation effort by " Kensal Rise Library" who say they will receive a ten pound fee for each one.  The boards will also carry an advert for their latest event.

Reportedly one of the trustees is financially linked to the estate agent concerned.

Normal estate agent boards are often the subject of complaint by local people as they are often considered to be unsightly, and they are sometimes subject to planning enforcement action as my late colleague former Cllr Lesley Jones explained.  A similar argument applies to satellite dishes

Friday, 16 August 2019

Saint GKC?

G K Chesterton has been rejected for canonisation because of his antisemitism, which is fair enough.  Yet I wonder who suggested him in the first place.  I have never heard of him being involved in any miracles.  He was not especially pious, and I don't know that anybody is known for venerating him.

Writing the Father Brown stories doesn't seem to be enough.

Thursday, 15 August 2019

Furness Junction Finally Improved

For years I have been complaining about the junction of Harlesden High Street and Furness Road.  As a result of the recent work on the traffic lights this is now sorted and the bizarre mix of different paving has also been turned into a uniform look.


Less happy is the destruction of the community mosaic which I understand fell victim to a mix of weathering and vandalism.

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

South Kilburn Housing Referendum Update

Somewhat predictably, the referendum on regenerating South Kilburn is being turned into an all or nothing debate.

The anti campaign is trying to link it to alleged poor behaviour by a number of housing associations in the area, but the outcome of the vote will have no effect on those bodies one way or another.  They will do whatever they do regardless of any vote and according to their own business plans.  What this debate might do, however, is kill off any new housing in South Kilburn, leaving the area frozen in its current state. 

If that were to happen, I suspect that the only way to get things moving again would be through a fundamental change in central government.