Sheikh Mohammed “super car park” plan gets green light

car

The ruler of Dubai HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum is set to build a six-storey car park in London to house his fleet of 114 luxury cars with five-star accommodation for his staff.

Planning officials at Wandsworth Council have approved the plans for the site near the River Thames and close to Battersea heliport.

The development – estimated to cost around $32 million – will include offices, bathrooms and three triple-bedroom flats for drivers

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A meeting of the Conservative-run council’s planning committee saw an eight to two vote in favour of the application drawn up by the Smech Management Company of Belgravia.

In a planning report published by the council, officers ruled the design – which has six storeys above ground and two basement floors – was “appropriate”.

The report said: “It is concluded that the principle of this development is acceptable.

“The proposal offers redevelopment this site with benefits of future planning control of an operation which currently operates with no planning control in respect to deliveries and collections.

“The design, scale and massing is regarded to be appropriate in line with buildings immediately surrounding. The proposed development would provide an improved development responsive to current market conditions providing employment in the area.

“It is not considered not to have an unduly negative impact on the immediate surroundings, the views and outlook from neighbouring properties.”

According to documents, the application also agreed to enter into an agreement to ensure provision for Wandsworth residents.

A council spokesman said:  “As a condition of the planning permission the council has required the owner to enter into a local employment agreement that means any new jobs will be made available to local unemployed residents.”

But the opposition Labour group has expressed objections to the plan and it has also attracted criticism from local residents.

One wrote on the Wandsworth Council website: “I am not happy of this proposal so I will object.

“Firstly, more noise from cars and people entering a car park any time of day or night; secondly my balcony will be facing a car park which means no privacy at all.

“Thirdly; safety. It is already hard to have a privacy in London so I would not be happy if my balcony was taken away for that purpose. It will overlook our bedroom/ living room.

“Also if there are more cars it will give us limited space to park our vehicle (as it is already very limited).”

Another said: “I would like to object to the prospect of increasing this problem with a multi-story car storage facility, both for safety reasons, and for the sake of local residents who will be blighted by the resulting congestion.

“In addition, drivers from this company occupy all free parking spots on this road, and spend a long time ‘hanging around’ outside of the property, and outside other properties.

“The parking creates further problems because it means that it is more difficult for the large cars to get the angle to enter and exit the property.”

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