Clean air and climate change issues raised over innovative urban shed

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The Greater London Authority has raised clean air and climate change issues over the plans for Gazeley’s innovative multi-storey warehouse in London.

The proposed redevelopment of a six-acre plot in Peruvian Wharf, Silvertown, would see a three-storey 426,000 sq ft inner city last-mile logistics hub for London, the first of its kind in the UK, built by Gazeley.

Plans were lodged with Newham Council in June this year and have proved controversial with more than 500 registered objections on the planning website with more than 1,000 people having signed a petition to stop the development.

In its comments to the Council the GLA stated that while the “building is innovative in design and well-conceived’ and is strongly supported in line with the London Plan, draft London Plan, and the Site Allocation; it falls short in relation to the resolution of air quality issues and appropriate mitigation.

Jules Pipe Deputy Mayor for planning, regeneration and skills let it be known that she considers ‘that the application does not yet comply with the London Plan, [and]the draft London Plan’ for these reasons but goes on to say that these can be resolved.

The GLA asked Gazeley to consider how emissions can be further reduced, including maximising the use of zero emission onward deliveries, a reduction in staff car parking, and the use of river transport for inward freight movements. Further information has been requested on the energy strategy, the surface water drainage strategy, water consumption, and urban greening.

At the time of the announcement that Gazeley would develop the facility, Alex Verbeek, UK MD, said: “This type of development has never been done before in the UK. A three-storey warehouse in such a central location will be hugely valuable for Londoners who will benefit from customers being able to deliver goods in record time. London is at the forefront of the digital revolution, but these services require an equally innovative supply chain to facilitate it. We feel that G.Park London Docklands will make a big contribution to the infrastructure which is essential to support London’s evolution as a leading centre for digital commerce.”

The site is opposite London City airport, immediately next to West Silvertown District London Rail (DLR) station on North Woolwich Road.

This is the first three-storey warehouse in the UK and will utilise platforms to allow HGVs and other vehicles to access each level. Each storey will comprise 140,000 sq ft of space with 26 dock doors and 4 access doors on each level. The site will contain 350 car parking spaces and around 75,000 sq ft of ancillary office space. G.Park London Docklands will include a range of sustainability features such as the provision of electric charging points for vehicles, wellness initiatives to improve the working environment for people and a BREEAM Very Good rating.

Gazeley predicts that some 1,244 light and 69 heavy goods vehicles would use the warehouse on a daily basis with the majority coming and going outside peak times. The transport assessment identifies that some 70 per cent of all trips to and from the site are expected to be made by commercial vehicles, of which 95 per cent are likely to be vans and only 5 per cent HGVs.

A ULEZ extension is to due cover Newham on 25 Oct 2021.

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