Bowen Drive: Convenience store planned for Fairview’s Victoria Way development

40 Victoria Way
The proposed store would be on the ground floor

A convenience store could be coming to the Fairview New Homes’ development on Victoria Way, replacing planned ground-floor office space.

Fairview gained permission for 330 homes on the old Thorn Lighting site in January 2018, despite 125 objections from residents and local councillors, with concerns raised by Transport for London and the Greater London Authority about the 144 car parking spaces included on the site. Fairview was accused of “bullying tactics” by the chair of one residents’ group. The first residents moved into Bowen Drive last year.

Now three floors of planned office space could be cut to two, with a planning application to change the ground floor of the development’s northeasternmost building – the one closest to the existing terrace at the foot of Victoria Way – to a convenience store.

“However a convenience shop operator has expressed interest in the ground floor (218sqm) of the commercial unit at the above site. This use would contribute towards local employment opportunities and create an active frontage to the site whilst retaining two floors of B1 office floor space above,” Fairview says in its application to Greenwich Council.

The convenience store operator is not named. The Co-op and, to a lesser extent, Sainsbury’s have taken spaces in new developments in the area in recent years.

“It is anticipated that the convenience store will be used by local people and that trips will occur mainly by sustainable modes,” Fairview says, which may come as a surprise to anyone who has seen the number of cars stopping outside local corner shops.

“It is anticipated that any associated delivery and servicing movements will be infrequent and undertaken using smaller vehicles, such as cars, small vans and LGVs.”

More details and comments can be left on Greenwich Council’s planning website.


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Build ’em up: Developer wants to build taller on Victoria Way

Fair Apartments, Victoria Way
The developer wants to add two storeys to the three-storey block

Two extra floors could be built on top of a development in Victoria Way under a recent law change that enables developers to add storeys to existing buildings without having to apply for planning permission.

Developer Imtiaz Mukhtar has notified Greenwich Council of plans to add the extra storeys – and eight new flats – to the Fair Apartments block at the northern end of Victoria Way that was built in the mid-2000s.

Legislation introduced by the Conservative government last year allows developers to build up to two extra storeys on housing blocks built after 1948 or before 2018.

Fair Apartments
The current development is roughly level with existing homes

The original development – built in the site of a small print works – was contentious when it was first proposed 18 years ago, with Greenwich Council refusing initial plans for 18 flats and four three-bedroom houses. A planning inspector subsequently approved the scheme. The current development – for 14 flats and four houses – was given approval in 2004.

While the current scheme is roughly level with the Victorian terrace next to it, this scheme would see it grow higher, from three storeys to five.

Fair Apartments
The developer hopes to skip the usual planning permission process

Three years ago, Greenwich councillors controversially approved 330 homes from Fairview on the other side of the terrace – although while the inclusion of 10-storey blocks upset neighbours, the buildings closest to the terrace were kept down to three storeys. That development is now partly occupied, with a footpath linking Victoria Way and Dupree Road now open.

Greenwich planning officers now have to decide whether this development meets the new law. Residents can submit comments on the Greenwich Council website (or search for reference 21/1109/PN4).


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Work on 20mph scheme for Charlton Village gets back under way

Victoria Way ramp works
Taking work home with you: The unusual sign on the Victoria Way road works

Work has resumed on creating a 20mph zone through Charlton Village, several weeks after activity stopped in the early stages of the coronavirus crisis.

Most of the work is relatively minor, but as reported on this website in March, involves building speed tables in Charlton Road, The Village and Charlton Church Lane, while there will be news parking restrictions at the junctions of Victoria Way and Eastcombe Avenue with Charlton Road.

“Continuous footways” will be introduced along Charlton Road in an attempt to nudge people into driving more considerately in and out of Invicta Road, Sherington Road, Wyndcliff Road, Couthurst Road, Hassendean Road, Bramhope Lane, Mascalls Road, Cherry Orchard and Victoria Way.

Work began on Victoria Way at the end of March but was abandoned after a few days. Now road crews are back, with a sign telling passers-by that the workers all live in the same household – and asking for people to email with concerns rather than approach the crews.

Victoria Way ramp
Work had been abandoned for several weeks

Greenwich Council says: “The government is encouraging highway work sites to return to business as usual with amended working practices, revised risk assessments and guidance.

“Staff working on these sites will strictly comply with the government and health guidance, with safe systems of work in place, while providing an essential service. Please be kind and considerate and assured that work is being carried out safely and for everyone’s benefit.”

When work is finished, there will be a 20mph restriction on Charlton Road and The Village between the Springfield Estate and the junction with Fairfield Grove. However, speed limits on the stretches of road towards Woolwich and Blackheath will remain unchanged – including the stretch of Hillreach where three teenagers died in a collision with an out-of-service bus in 2008.


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