Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Public hearing on Shepherd's Bush Green "facelift"

Opposition among residents is mounting to our Council's proposed "facelift" of our Green with groups being led from nearby streets Pennard Road and others. A public hearing, lasting three days, will take place from May 17th at Hammersmith Town Hall and be led by the Planning Inspectorate.

I have seen recent documents from the Planning Inspectorate that label our Council's publicity about the changes so far as, to use their words, "deficient". They have written to residents who object to our Council's plans to chop down numerous trees and replace them with cafes and landscaping to assure them that their objections will get a fair hearing.

All of this will come as no surprise to Shepherd's Bush residents who will have long been accustomed to signs on the Green heralding the imminent revamping of the space as being imminent. But the signs have been there for nearly three years and in one case has fallen down through old age.

There is no doubt that the Green needs work and lots of it - so the Council are to be commended for taking it on, and for that matter carrying out some excellent public works around other parts of the borough recently, such as the new pathway to Ravenscourt Park, but their inability or unwillingness to listen to residents has become a hallmark of theirs which looks like it might get them into trouble again. If not here, with Shepherd's Bush Market and its seven floors of luxury flats which will cast a huge shadow over the Green whatever is done with it.

Is it really impossible to ammend these plans and listen to the people who live there or do we have to go through another round of residents versus Council again?

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