City of London delays decision over 22 Bishopsgate skyscraper light-blocking row

Kasmira Jefford
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The developers of 22 Bishopsgate have warned that the row poses significant risks to the scheme (Source: Axa Investment Managers)

Oh dear. It looks like it could take the developers of the City's next big skyscraper at 22 Bishopsgate longer than they hoped to quash a dispute with its shorter neighbours over its looming and potentially light-prohibiting presence.

AXA Investment Managers - Real Assets and Lipton Rogers have been locked in a row with its neighbours and campaign groups, who argue that the 62-storey tower overshadows their buildings and encroaches on their so-called rights to light.

They had asked planners at the City of London Corporation to invoke rarely-used powers that would effectively see the council temporarily acquire the site under a Section 237 agreement and therefore override any legal action.

The council were poised to vote in the developers' favour at a committee meeting today after planners recommended the move. However the committee said has decided to delay a decision to step in until April to give information "from interested parties" further consideration.

Michael Welbank, chairman of the committee, said:

“The use of a section 237 for the temporary acquisition of a site in the City is something that the Corporation has rarely used. When it does, it gives this very careful consideration and only for developments of strategic significance for the City. As we have received new correspondence from interested parties on this matter it is only right we give this our full attention. Therefore, we will delay its consideration until the next Planning and Transportation Committee in April.”

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