Tesco SGR: redevelopment plans.

I have just recieved thru' the door a consultation document - with a pre-paid reply-envelope - about a proposed redevelopment of our local Tesco store on the Stroud Green Rd. There is only a very short amount of time allowed for a response given the extended Bank Holiday. While I am broadly OK with the proposal, I have objected to the height of it, wanting the height to stay within the bounds of the Str.Gr.Rd's existing general roof line.
By the way, before Tesco built on the site, it used to be a depot and yard for the forner (post-war) United Dairies milk-delivery service (milk floats), i.e it was the 'new' dairy that took on and expanded the role of the still-standing Old Dairy at thefoot of Crouch Hill.


  • Agree about the hieght you can see it in the Osboure Road view. I like the inclusion of the current Tesco sign looking a bit tired. Why not just give the sign a spruce up. They did apply for planning to put up the wood covered version of the Tesco signs a few years ago. It is an excuse to make loads of money out of the air above the current building. No mention of who gets the 50 flats they are going to build. It is also on the bounday of Islington and Haringey so planning will be Islingtom but the eye sore is from Haringay. It is load of bollocks what they say about it being sympthetic to the heritage zone. Nearest comparision is the Arts build, windy alley. It is just a money maiing scheame. It also doesnt say who is doing the devlopment
  • I've not seen this. Is it a formal planing application? Anyone got a link/number?
  • How do you post photos? Arkady drop me your email and I will photo over to you
  • Public consultation is on Wednesday 8th June Holly Park Methodist Church Crouch Hill N4 4 BY 8th June between 4pm and 7 pm.
  • It is very big for where it is situated it is 6 stories high. Take off the to three and it might be okay. Looks like it is built out pre formed brick panels that do seem to be popping up all ovry the place
  • Thanks all. I've now seen the pics courtesy of @krappyrubsnif.

    The northern part of the proposal looks good - much more respectful of the Victorian terrace than the existing monstrosity. I don't much like the massing on the southern bit - there's definitely room for more density than there is at present, but the top two stories ought to be set-back so that from the street it doesn't look so towering, and maintains the enclosure ratio. The southern block in particular is just too much.

    The façade looks passable to me - a fair amount of detailing, and at least they're cladding in brick these days.

    All in all a vast improvement on what's there already, but there are definitely things I'd do differently.
  • Just back from the open 3 hours about this in the Methodist Hall up Crouh Hill. When you arrive there is a little "go this way" board with no mention about Tescos consultaion etc. Very easy to walk straight past. I asked questions about who is developing the site. The story seems to be Tescos have sold the site to a developer company who resides in Finchley but the development company resides in Gibraltar and the idea is that Tescos will be shut for about 2 years and will then reopen on a long lease. The hight is too much for the area and there a lot of folks there who have to look at it from their houses either on the Haringey side or around the back in Regina Road. The new Tescos will be about the same size. When one of the PR consultants was asked what community gain we get out of a same size Tescos the answer was you will get new fridges and they wont leak! The consultants are unable to say who will buy the flats and what social element if any will be insisted on. I encourage you get around and have a look. It closes at 7pm. I sense an action protest group is about to get going.
  • Have a look at the website make sure you have magnifying glass !
  • I take that back click on the number above the image to see what they used at the meeting
  • edited June 2022
    I went too. Fractious atmosphere.

    The developer hasn't helped themselves by not explaining the context - i.e. that the London Plan says there needs to be much more housing and directs each borough to build x number of new houses. The boroughs then have to allocate sites for redevelopment and at a particular density - this is one such site. In other words, if you want to blame someone, blame the democratically elected Council.

    If there was already a Neighbourhood Plan then it could have been used to influence those allocations and densities, but for some reason there STILL isn't despite the Neighbourhood Forum being in existence for years.

    Still, I find many of the complaints aren't to my taste. We live in the least-dense capital city in the developed world, and it shows. When you look at phenomenally successful urban environments like NYC, Rome, Paris, or Vienna, with their 7+ story streets, one's first reaction isn't normally 'oh dear think of all the overshadowing and overlooking'. That's just living in a city. This is a really obvious place for some densification, providing much-needed homes. What people should try and influence is the thing they CAN influence - the relative massing of the different blocks and the facades - to get as good-looking a development as possible. They won't though, they'll just be NIMBYs and achieve nothing. Just like with City North. Just like with John Jones.
  • I agree with the comment above about the picture entitled "Proposed view from Osborne Road". The building shown is an extension (upwards) of the existing building, and I think it is far too tall, and so completely out of scale with the rest of Stroud Green Road as the picture clearly illustrates. Also the full height glazing and the grid style facade, so loved by architects, are completely out of character with the rest of the street which is mainly victorian terraces and parades. They show these windows as clear glass with a little hint of matching blinds/curtains which is not how people will cover their windows. I also went to the exhibition on Crouch Hill and spoke with a representative about the massing and how they liked the stepping up across the three buildings. I suggested that equally satisfactory massing could be to have A B A rather than A B C, i.e. to have the building shown as the tallest to be two stories lower, so that it is about the same height as the existing brick building to the left of the picture, then step up slightly to the next part of the development with its 3 bay arrangement which he explained echos the existing and I find more satisfactory. He told me I was entitled to my opinion which made me realise that caring about the quality of my local built environment probably makes me a selfish NIMBY, and, of course, people need homes. We already have the extensive development at Finsbury Park which maybe more appropriate as it is at a major metropolitan interchange. I suggest that Stroud Green Road is a much smaller scale environment.
  • John Jones to a certain extent gets away with it because it is on a hill which I suppose is why there was s cinema a good while ago
  • "Much-needed homes".

    Building a few flats on top of a new Tesco won't make anything more affordable for anyone who needs a home, it just means more flats for the developer to sell to "investors" and make money.
  • @fwiw I made a similar argument to them about the massing. It would look much better, more coherent, and lower from the street if they did it that way. From most angles you wouldn't see the upper stories if they were set back, and they wouldn't lose any internal volume overall.

    We desperately need to ban off-shore sales and second homes, to give people confidence that the usual rule that increasing supply reduces demand fully applies to housing.
  • I know many want to see the flats pushed back from SGR side but please consider the residents on Regina Road at the back who will be severely impacted by this oversized development, especially if the design is 'pushed back'.
  • edited June 2022
    I would like to see some renders of what it will look like from Regina. To be clear though, setbacks wouldn't mean more height on the back of the development. Just a more even number of stories at the front, but with the top stories being mansard-like. You can mostly clearly see how that could work by looking at the proposed messy corner at the bottom of image 7 on the website.
  • It's far from a perfect example, but this image illustrates what I mean. Standard in neoclassical architecture, reduces impact on the street, and there are contemporary examples of it working well.


    It's why the glorious but very dense streets of Paris and Manhattan still have lots of light: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/planning/images/content/pages/zoning/glossary/zh_sky_exposure_plane.jpg
  • Thank you for the explanations. The whole site needs reducing in height all round and volume. There's been no assessments done on the impact on local amenities. I've still not seen a view of how it will look from Saltdene car park which, apart from a 5 foot wall, is at ground level at present. The new proposal looks to have at least 5 storeys starting at first floor level. Islington's strategic plan 2021 admits Islington is the most densely populated Borough in England and Wales. Why is yet more housing, which will increase density even more, being proposed.
  • London's density is about 5k per square kilometer. Paris is 20k. But people don't tend to think of Paris, or Vienna, or NYC as too dense. It contributes to thriving neighbourhoods and strong local economies. We should be focusing on densification of our cities, lazily designed for a car-dominated world, instead of building on more and more countryside. Where else are new homes meant to go?

    Islington is about 13k. But the highest density is mostly at the southern end. In Stroud Green it will be closer to the average.

    Better not to focus on the density, and instead focus on whether it's a good design. We can influence the latter. The former is already determined by the Council's site allocation policies and is unlikely to be influenced at this stage in the planning process. There are a bunch of improvements that could be made that would reduce the visual impact.

    My experience - slightly bitter at this point - is that people won't do that though, and instead will do the usual NIMBY thing and achieve nothing.
  • What really is the point of the questionnaire?

    The only explanation I can see is by providing a pre-paid envelope and handful of simple questions, the developer is hoping local folks will take their concerns to them instead of where it might count for something (to the council etc).

    This way, the developer can claim to care about local opinion but bin all the responses, do exactly what they want, and then the council waves it all through since they themselves won't have heard much...

    Too cynical? Why is the developer not pointing people towards their official planning applications and so on?
  • It's the pre-consultation before the formal one is submitted to the council. Standard practice for significant developments.
  • I see. I'll hold back my cynicism for now.
  • Arkady, What will the developer do with the info they gather as suggested by fwiiw?
  • They also do not seem to have anything about this anywhere near the Tescos sight which is where they should be getting the feedback
  • Ali, they're not under any obligation to do anything at this stage, though it's common for developers to make adjustments based on comments received before they submit a formal application. A consultation isn't a referendum though (any more than the actual planning application will be). Based on my prior experience (and comments here and at the consultation evening) I would imagine most of the comments will be complaining about things that the Council itself has asked for/already established in its planning policy and Site Allocations Document, and so will be ignored. On the other hand it's not uncommon for the initial proposal to deliberately 'go large' so that it can be toned down ahead of the actual submission, and then everyone involved can say that they listened to concerns...
  • I share all these concerns about this proposal and would add that the rear of Tesco's is a huge car park at present, presumably they deliver and unload on SGR if this build goes ahead? so a bus stop or Zebra crossing-or both - may have to be moved. This is just more of what we endured at the station (Thank you John Jones for encouraging more opportunitistic developers) and again it looks like it's been 'designed' by an accountant. Plus the author of this proposal needs to know the store in question is Stroud Green Tesco not Finsbury Park !
  • I think the loading bay will be like the Arts Building sort of undergroundish with the building on top
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