Select Committee on Transport, Local Government and the Regions Memoranda


Tall buildings in Chelsea

  Existing tall buildings in Chelsea are:

    —  London Underground's Lots Road Power Station with its 84m high chimneys;

    —  Carlton Tower Hotel, Sloane Street: 16 storeys—the first of the tall hotels (1961); and

    —  the Council's World's End Estate: 19 storeys (Cadbury Brown with Eric Lyons) dating from the late 1960s.

  Tall buildings visible from Chelsea are of two kinds:

      i.  19th century structures:

    —  National History Museum (Alfred Waterhouse);

    —  Colcutt Tower, Imperial College; and

    —  Victoria & Albert Museum.

      ii.  20th century buildings:

    —  Holiday Inn Hotel (formerly Penta then Forum Hotel), Cromwell Road (116m/27 storeys)—a product of a Government grant scheme to promote hotel development (1971-73);

    —  Knightsbridge Barracks (94m/29 storeys) 1970 (Sir Basil Spence)—a Government development pushed through despite opposition from LCC/GLC and City of Westminster;

    —  Belvedere Tower, Chelsea Harbour (77m/20 storeys) 1987—rushed through by an outgoing administration on Hammersmith and Fulham in the one month gap between the abolition of the GLC (31 March 1986) and the Borough elections; and

    —  Montevetro, Battersea (64m/13 storeys) 1999 (Richard Rogers Partnership)—called in by Secretary of State for the Environment who appointed a specialist inspector on modern architecture: allowed by Secretary of State.

  The Society opposed the development of Montevetro because of its effect on reducing the openness of the Thames as seen from Cheyne Walk and Albert and Battersea Bridges.

  It also opposed Lord Foster's design for a tall apartment house at Albion Wharf, Battersea immediately opposite Chelsea Old Church. This was subsequently reduced to 11 storeys.

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Prepared 22 January 2002