Boris Johnson (nearly) empties mayoral inbox after approving Alpha Square and former Westferry Printworks schemes

 
Kasmira Jefford
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Both the Alpha Square and Westferry Printworks sites are on or near the Isle of Dogs (Source: Getty)

With just a week left until his term as London mayor comes to an end, Boris Johnson will leave two major planning schemes in his inbox for his successor to review after giving the go-ahead two controversial developments this week.

Plans for Alpha Square, a 63-storey residential tower being proposed by Asian property firm Far East Consortium (FEC) and media tycoon Richard Desmond's redevelopment of Westferry Printworks, were both approved at a public hearing on Wednesday.

Deputy mayor for planning Sir Edward Lister said the Westferry Printworks scheme, which is being developed by London & Regional Properties on behalf Desmond, would regenerate a long disused site and help bring “enormous benefits” to the area.

The local council Tower Hamlets had been minded to refuse the scheme over concerns that it could effect the winds in the area, which are important for the local Docklands Sailing and Watersports Centre.

Alpha Square, which will create 634 homes in the Isle of Dogs, was also approved on the grounds that it will bring other benefits including a school and a health centre as well as 25 per cent of affordable housing on site.

This leaves Ballymore and Hammerson’s £800m Bishopsgate Goodsyard scheme in Shoreditch for the next mayor to review after Johnson delayed the hearing so that the developers could revise their plans, which faced fierce opposition.

The fate of the Wimbledon Greyhound Stadium will also be left in the next mayor’s hands.

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