London SE1 website team

Southwark plans new policy to allow tall buildings in more places

Southwark Council is preparing a new planning policy which will allow the construction of tall buildings along the Old Kent Road and in other parts of the borough where they were previously ruled out.

The council's cabinet will next week agree to launch a public consultation on the New Southwark Plan, a major revision to the borough's planning policy.

Measures under consideration include a major expansion of the places identified as suitable for tall and large buildings.

Most notably, the council plans to give policy support to high-rise development along Old Kent Road.

The Old Kent Road has recently been identified as an 'opportunity area' by the Mayor of London and it is expected that significant development here will contribute towards the cost of a Bakerloo line extension.

The council's present policy limits tall buildings in the far north of the borough to Elephant & Castle and two clusters around London Bridge and Blackfriars Bridge.

The proposed policy shift would allow tall and large buildings across the part of Southwark which falls within the central [London] activities zone – that is, most of SE1 west of Tower Bridge Road.

Extract from Southwark's existing core strategy

"... the locations that could accommodate tall buildings are limited to the area around London Bridge Station east of Borough High Street, Elephant & Castle and the northern end of Blackfriars Road. The core part of Peckham, Canada Water and Aylesbury action areas could also be suitable for tall buildings ... In other areas tall buildings are not appropriate because they are not very built up, do not have good public transport access, are covered by conservation areas or have other heritage asset implications".

Extract from the 2014 issues and options paper

"The appropriate areas for tall and large buildings are:
45.1.1 Central Activities Zone.
46.1.2 Elephant & Castle, Bankside, Borough & London Bridge, Old Kent Road (proposed) Canada Water (proposed) Opportunity Areas.
45.1.3 Peckham and Aylesbury Action Area cores.
45.1.4 Elephant & Castle, Canada Water and Peckham Major Town Centres.
45.1.5 Locations outside of these areas may be sensitive or inappropriate for tall and large buildings. However, some locations may be appropriate and will be considered on their planning merits on a case by case basis."

Read the New Southwark Plan issues & options paper (PDF, 10MB)

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