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Greenwich Council approves London City Cruise Port

The Royal Borough of Greenwich has resolved to grant planning permission for the redevelopment of land at Enderby Wharf. 

The planning application includes amended proposals for a cruise liner terminal development project, known as London City Cruise Port, but also includes residential development, open space, community amenity space and public realm.

Planning permission for the terminal was originally granted in 2012 as part of a redevelopment project at Enderby Wharf. A revised application was recently submitted to make changes to the northern part of the site. The planning application was reported to Royal Borough of Greenwich Planning Board on 21 July 2015.

The revised application was submitted to accommodate changes in the cruise ship industry. As a result of the new Emission Control Areas being imposed by the International Maritime Organisation it is now more commercially viable for cruise ships to stay alongside for longer and therefore there is a need for improved facilities at the terminal. The amended proposals for the terminal will accommodate vessels up to 240 metres long and it is expected that 60 cruise ships will use the terminal each year. The revised proposals will replace a hotel with two residential towers containing 263 new homes. Additionally, a residential tower previously accommodating 93 homes has now been increased to 214 units. The redevelopment will deliver a total of 477 new homes with provisions for 15% being allocated as affordable housing.

The proposal has received objections and concerns have been raised regarding air quality, traffic and noise.

London Borough of Tower Hamlets was particularly concerned of the effect of the proposals on its residents in its borough and "[object] to the planning application on the current lack of necessary information. [Tower Hamlets] requests that further information is provided to enable it to appropriately consider the planning application, to ensure that the effects on [the borough] receptors are fully understood."

The application is subjection to various conditions and approval from the mayor of London.

Councillor Danny Thorpe said: "I would expect this development to open up this whole area of Greenwich - both on the land and in terms of river use. This cruise terminal is not a commercial terminal, but is purpose built for passengers - allowing easy onward transport to the rest of the borough and beyond from the peninsula. That, combined with the improved river boat service, will provide benefits to the whole borough and make the area much more attractive in terms of inward investment".

Planning expert Thomas Edwards of Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind Out-Law.com, said: "The applicants will be pleased with the resolution of the Royal Borough of Greenwich and see this as a significant step forward in realising the development proposals for a new cruise terminal for the river Thames."

"It is a good example of a developer having to amend development proposals to reflect changing circumstances, in this case a change in regulatory framework for cruise ships and a change in the market conditions meaning there is no longer demand for a new hotel in this location," said Edwards. 

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