All 10 councillors on Merton’s planning committee voted last night in favour of development plans for AFC Wimbledon and Galliard Homes to build a stadium and high density housing development on the site of the current greyhound stadium.
It was a well-run meeting, with council members given the chance to ask questions on all aspects of the scheme. The only real hiccups were: a problem with the webcast which meant proceedings could be heard but not seen on the big screen set up as an overflow in the council’s lobby area; and an intermittent fault that meant the Chamber of Commerce chairman couldn’t be heard via his microphone, but as a bit-part player that was of little consequence.
AFC Wimbledon is undoubtedly already starting to further flesh out its detailed plans for the site, which will start off as an 11,000-seater stadium. Galliard Homes are probably already devising ways to market their 602-apartment development to customers in the Far East.
Meanwhile, we folks who live in the Plough Lane area are wondering :
- how our neighbourhood is going to cope with all the inevitable extra parking, road, rail and pavement traffic, and
- how Merton’s Labour Party members can live with themselves for conspiring to allow a billionaire property co to offer a paltry 9.6% in affordable housing, when the borough target is 40%.
Answers to both these questions were clearly lacking at last night’s planning meeting.