The plans for Croydon's new cultural quarter at College Green - one of the largest regeneration projects ever approved in the borough - have won planning consent.
The ambitious development will see the 8 hectare Fair Field area next to the East Croydon transport hub transformed into a vibrant destination for arts, education and culture.
The plans include more than 2000 much-needed new homes, regenerated and new high-quality streets and public spaces, a brand new college, a 2000 sq metre art gallery, a new energy centre and new shops, community and office space, all with the refurbished Fairfield Halls at its heart.
An extensive programme of enabling works has been underway since last summer to prepare the 1962 Fairfield Halls for major construction activity. The highly respected acoustic characteristics of the Halls are being protected and there will be extensive heritage led refurbishment internally and externally. There will be contemporary intervention and extension including new cafes and restaurants and the new gallery and roof top multi-function space and terrace.
The much needed new public realm for the College Green and Park Lane streetscape will also be implemented in the first phases as will 218 of the new homes, new College and the new energy centre. The energy centre will efficiently balance the production, re-use and distribution of energy between the cultural/education uses and the residential accommodation within the site.
These ambitious regeneration proposals, which are being delivered by the council's development company Brick by Brick www.bxbdevelopment.com, are taking place over a number of phases. The scheme has been developed in consultation with the various landowners on the wider site and these discussions will continue as the scheme progresses.
"I'm absolutely delighted this project has been approved. College Green is a hugely symbolic project for Croydon and crucial to the borough's overall regeneration and growth ambitions. The proposal will revitalise an under-used and tired area, turning it into a vibrant public space and reconnecting it with the rest of the town centre. It will also supply much-needed new homes and jobs as well as fantastic arts, leisure and educational facilities. It's fantastic news for everyone in Croydon."
Councillor Alison Butler,
Deputy leader and cabinet member for homes, regeneration and planning
Earlier this month the Government also gave plans for Croydon's new cultural quarter a boost awarding it £14.2 million from the Coast to Capital Partnership for contribution to growth in the region.
"This is a huge step forward in the regeneration of Croydon. College Green is a crucial site in connecting the town centre and has enormous untapped potential to provide new homes, jobs and experiences for residents and visitors alike. We are already on site delivering early stage works and this decision allows us to progress into the main delivery programme of this award winning scheme."
Colm Lacey, Chief Executive, Brick by Brick