Liberal Democrats in Putney have objected to a re-submitted proposal for a late night drinking venue on the rooftop of Putney Exchange Shopping centre. The proposal for Palmhouse Putney faces substantial local opposition and we encourage residents to join us in saying "no" to this unsuitable proposal.
Local campaigners have spoken with a number of local people who are deeply concerned about this proposal and have encouraged the Liberal Democrats to take up this issue on their behalf. "The downsides of the development will be significant for local residents and businesses and the upsides are unconvincing", said Paul Benton, Thamesfield resident and Lib Dem candidate in last year's Council elections. "We urge the planning committee of Wandsworth Council to listen to residents' concerns and refuse this application."
From bad to worse
A previous proposal for a venue (formerly known as Pergola Putney) was rightly withdrawn in April 2018 as a result of residents’ objections. Unfortunately, this year’s planning application is not an improvement on the earlier proposal. Instead of reducing their plans in response to residents’ concerns, the developer has scaled them up and proposes to increase capacity of the venue by 40% (from 500 to 700 people) and expand the operating hours substantially.
Reasons to say "no" to the new plan
- Significant, detrimental impact on traffic and parking: the loss of much needed parking on the roof would have a knock-on impact on the surrounding streets (many of which are one-way streets) and all of which are already congested. Daily deliveries of several lorries a day will have a further impact on Lacy Road. There is no designated zone for the drop off and collection of visitors to the venue and the increase of private hire cars will have a detrimental effect of surrounding streets especially Monserrat and Lacy Road and add to the congestion and pollution of the Putney High Street (third worst hotspot for pollution in London according to Kings College London Research). There is simply not the space and local infrastructure for a large development of this kind.
- Major disruption and disturbance to local residents: the noise produced by 700 people and music in a venue constructed on a roof would have a significant effect on the residents in this quiet residential area. The increased opening hours to 11:30pm 6 days a week and 11:00 on Sundays would result in noise disturbance every day of the week. In addition, the proposal to extend the closing time to 2am 25 days a year would further disturb the sleep of individuals and families for every second weekend a year. Furthermore, we are concerned about the noise and disturbance created when customers disperse and the likely anti-social behaviour that would disturb local residents and the businesses, as well as others visiting the family-orientated shopping centre.
- Unsuitable for the local environment: the introduction of a drinking-focused venue of this type and scale is inappropriate for the quiet residential area of Thamesfield and for Putney more widely. The Palmhouse would detract from the character of the area and damage Positively Putney's vision for the area as a vibrant place to live, work and visit. Far from making Putney safer and cleaner, it would increase pollution and crime in our local area.
In addition to the disturbing adverse effects of the development on residents, as outlined above, it is not clear that the new development would bring benefits to other local businesses in Putney. Clients of the Palmhouse are unlikely to spend money in other businesses on the High Street as they will travel to the venue as a destination in itself and predominantly after the other shops have closed. In fact, the Palmhouse is far more likely to have a detrimental effect on other businesses, with increased traffic, congestion, rubbish and crowds putting off other visitors.
Details of the application can be found at Planning Application - enter 2019/0124 in the search box. The last day for comments is 14 February 2019.