Out-Law News

Westminster resolves to approve luxury residential redevelopment of Canadian High Commission building in Mayfair

Westminster Council has resolved to grant planning permission for the redevelopment of the Canadian High Commission building in London's Mayfair to provide 41 luxury apartments, despite a lack of on-site affordable housing provision under the scheme.

Developer Lodha Group applied to the Council in June for permission to demolish the existing, seven-storey building at 1-3 Grosvenor Square and replace it with a nine-storey building containing 41 luxury apartments with between one and six bedrooms.

The scheme also includes a gym, a swimming pool and a banqueting suite for use by residents and 53 basement parking spaces. The existing Grosvenor Square and Grosvenor Street facades will be retained under the plans.

A planning report, produced for a meeting of the Council's planning applications committee yesterday, asked the committee to "consider if the provision of affordable housing on site should be sought". The Council's interim guidance on affordable housing required on-site provision of 25% or a payment in lieu of £21,995,053, the report said, and an independent report produced for the Council concluded that 22.5% on-site provision would be viable.

However, a late offer from the applicant, to provide 10 affordable units off-site and a payment of £17,295,053, was considered acceptable by the Council and a resolution was made to grant planning permission for the scheme.

Lodha acquired the building from the Canadian government in November 2013. The Canadian High Commission is due to vacate the premises in 2015 and relocate its office functions to Canada House in Trafalgar Square.

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