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Residents urged to respond on Cambridge Road Estate regeneration consultation that could see nearly 2000 homes built on site

James Giles

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Local people are urged to have their say on the three shortlisted options for the regeneration of the Cambridge Road Estate.

A major consultation has started following the launch of Kingston Council’s proposals at the CREst Fun Day on the Estate on Saturday 3 September. The proposals offer options ranging from partial to complete replacement of all homes on the estate. Regardless of the option chosen, the site will see an increase in the number of homes, from a current c.800 to between c.1800 and c.2000 homes.

Councillor Kevin Davis, Leader of Kingston Council, said: 
“Kingston’s population is growing. We need to plan for that growth, make sure it’s right for our borough and also do what we can to provide homes for future generations. Part of that plan is to embark on an ambitious programme to regenerate some of the largest housing estates within Kingston, with Cambridge Road Estate being the first.

“This consultation is a hugely important step for the regeneration of the Cambridge Road Estate as it will shape and define what we do next to design an estate fit for the future. All three options are financially viable and would bring much-needed additional housing into the area.

“The consultation launched over the weekend in the heart of the Estate and will continue until 23 October. During this time there are 15 drop-in sessions, including specific events for those with English as a second language and vulnerable residents. To capture as many views as possible, we’re also running an online survey, with hard copies available on the estate and at the events.

“After the consultation period closes, we’ll analyse your feedback, shape the plans and come to a preferred option. This preferred option will then go to our Growth Committee in March 2017 for a decision. My hope is that those affected by the regeneration come to a drop-in, fill out a survey and tell us what you think. Kingston’s future is being planned now. Help shape it, be part of it and be proud of it.”

To find out more and have your say, visit www.kingston.gov.uk/CRERegen or the Housing Office, 5 – 8 Tadlow on the Cambridge Road Estate to pick up a copy of the survey. Consultation closes on 23 October 2016.

James Giles is the Editor of the Kingston Enquirer, covering local news and events in Kingston, New Malden, Surbiton, Tolworth and Chessington.

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Kingston Town

Lib Dems in CHAOS after 2000 sign petition on parking charges… but refuse to back down

James Giles

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Kingston Lib Dems are in chaos after refusing to back down on controversial changes to parking permits in the borough, instead announcing an amended scheme which has been blasted by residents as ‘hap-dash and ill-thought-out’.

The proposals would have resulted in a 350% hike in the cost of a parking permit for some residents in the borough, whilst newly purchased Teslas would get to park for free.

Instead, amended proposals announced today mean that cars will, this year, face a cost of up to £245, up from the current £90, but down from the proposed £465.

In a press release explaining the rationale for the latest amendment, Councillor Hilary Gander said: “I believe that differential parking is one measure that will go towards achieving [cleaner air in Kingston].

“It seems, however, we may have moved too fast and not fully explained our approach.”

The ruling Lib Dem administration has, refused to rule out increasing the charges again next year, and have not announced how they are plugging the £525,000 gap this will leave in their budget for this financial year.

New Malden resident Angie, who lives in Queens Road, said: “It’s clear to me from what the Lib Dems have written that they fully intend to increase permit costs again next year – it’s not a case of ‘moving too fast’, it’s a case of these charges being discriminatory and unfair.

“How on earth can the Council practically halve these figures on a whim. It just proves that this is not really about tackling the issue of air quality, it’s about making a quick buck.”

Campaigners who set up a group to attempt to halt these proposals say that this latest amendment will not reduce local opposition to the plans, and are urging residents affected to attend Full Council at the Guildhall next Wednesday, starting at 7:30pm, where they have forced the Council to debate the issue by raising a community motion.

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