Residents have until March 12, 2012 to have their say on whether West Kensington and Gibbs Green estates should be included in wider plans for the area.
Hammersmith & Fulham Council is consulting on a potential land sale agreement with developer EC Properties which has proposals to build 7,500 new homes across the redevelopment area.
The council and residents must weigh up the benefits regeneration could bring - including new homes, new community facilities and job opportunities for people living on the estates, against the disruption that major development inevitably causes.
The extended consultation period will allow residents time to respond to more information that has been requested by some residents about the potential Conditional Land Sale Agreement (CLSA).
H&F Council has this week reaffirmed how the proposed CLSA includes important conditions that seek to protect residents' interests, including:
- Legally binding tenant and leaseholder offers negotiated by residents themselves. The terms of these offers go beyond what has been offered by other regeneration schemes.
- Under the terms of the offer residents would only move once their new home is ready, while there would be compensation for leaseholders, freeholders and tenants.
- The developer must build the new homes before demolishing existing properties on the estate. Only then will the land be passed to the developer. This is a crucial part of the 'move only when your new home is ready' condition.
- The council can insist on revisions to further phases of building work if the developer’s plans are considered too disruptive for people living on the estate.
- The council is requiring a degree of 'upfront' payment from the potential developer, EC Properties. This gives the developer the incentive to get on with work as quickly as possible.
Furthermore, the council is pointing out that it will only enter an agreement if it is completely confident of the developer’s ability to build new homes and community facilities. In the event that the CLSA is agreed the council has appointed one of the world’s leading financial auditors to carry out financial checks on the developer during an initial five-year period. The council would ensure proper financial checks are maintained for the entire development period.
All residents living on the estates, and in the wider area, have received a consultation pack. It is also available online at www.lbhf.gov.uk/westken or residents can call 020 8753 3334 for another copy.