Contact us: Got a photo? Text 'SLPICS' to 80360. Got a story? Call the newsdesk: 020 8744 4260
Residents urge Richmond Council to take action over 'iceberg' developments
Massive underground "iceberg" home extensions could be curbed after residents called on the council to support a planning law change.
Neighbours in the narrow Old Palace Lane, by Richmond Green, are fed up with constant disruption as the owner of Asgill Lodge turns it into an "iceberg" home with a vast underground development.
Owner Chris Rokos was given permission to build a swimming pool under the property last year.
Steve Eldergill, project manager at Blenheim House Construction, said the team was working to keep disruption to a minimum.
He said: “Construction work, whether for a basement development or a loft extension will at times be disruptive for neighbours living nearby.
“We are hopeful that by keeping the dialogue going with neighbours and sharing information on the build programme with them, we will be able to plan ahead sufficiently to address any concerns as and when they arise”.
The work, which could continue for another year, sees lorries constantly drive down the small street.
Richard Young, an architect who lives in the road, said it was a national issue.
He said: "We want to put some weight behind this to change it nationally to protect all areas.
"We cannot stop this development but it should not happen again.
"It is one of those projects which unfortunately current planning legislation doesn’t have a way of stopping.
"The council can only operate within national planning legislation. It is a very delicate issue."
Earlier this year, Kensington and Chelsea Council published draft rules to limit basement developments to a single storey and said it would impose tighter restrictions on extensions underneath gardens.
Leader of Richmond Council Lord True said local authorities needed more control over such projects as demand for basement developments spread.
He said: "The powers that currently exist are not sufficient.
"We have had talks with other authorities and with minsters over a period. We need regulatory change.
"Is it acceptable that people should be gouging up their back gardens in their interests? If they have money to do that then they should move to a bigger house in my view."
Comments are closed on this article.