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Lend Lease expects first profits from Elephant & Castle in 2016

Australian developer Lend Lease says it expects to make its first profits from the regeneration of Elephant & Castle as soon as 2016.

Lend Lease made the disclosure in its annual report, published to the Australian Stock Exchange this week.

The company also claims to have pre-sold more than 60 per cent of homes at its two Elephant & Castle developments which are now under way: One The Elephant and Trafalgar Place.

Lend Lease says that thanks to "strong pre-sales" it began work on the two sites earlier than previously anticipated.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson visited the One The Elephant site at the former Elephant & Castle Leisure Centre earlier this month.

It is six years since Southwark Council picked Lend Lease as its partner at the Elephant & Castle, though only three years have passed since a binding agreement was signed.

This summer communities secretary Eric Pickles confirmed a compulsory purchase order enabling the council to buy out the handful of remaining leaseholders on the Heygate Estate.

Meanwhile the council is challenging a ruling by the Information Commissioner ordering the disclosure of viability assessments relating to Lend Lease's outline planning application for the redevelopment of the Heygate Estate.

As the Information Commissioner has pointed out, "whilst the council has claimed that the development is commercial in nature, it has simultaneously claimed that the scheme is public in nature in order to exercise its compulsory purchase order powers".

The council has also granted itself planning permission to erect a steel fence around the northern half of the Heygate Estate, including a large stretch of the New Kent Road.

Earlier this year Lend Lease announced that it was delaying the redevelopment of the northernmost blocks of the estate.

• Lend Lease has set up a new contact number – 020 3600 0001 – for residents to use to raise concerns or ask questions about the construction sites for One The Elephant and Trafalgar Place.

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