Marketing is not so sweet for Cherry Orchard Road flats

Developers Menta Redrow are marketing £499,000 flats from a shed alongside East Croydon Station that doesn’t have planning permission, after the cheque to pay the application fee bounced. WALTER CRONXITE reports on the development’s latest controversy

An application for permission for a temporary sales office for the multi-million-pound luxury apartments development on Cherry Orchard Road goes before the council’s planning committee next week – months after the Portakabin-style shed was plonked down at the corner of the busy entrance to East Croydon Station.

The shed has drawn fierce criticism from one Addiscombe councillor, who describes it as “an eyesore, and an affront to local residents”, and who claims that it is proof that the existing granted planning application for the site is not sustainable.

The cheery trees which gave their name to the Addiscombe road have long ago been felled

The cherry trees which gave their name to the Addiscombe road where Menta Redrow are building their flats were felled long ago

Delay in the process has been caused by the cheque to accompany the planning application having bounced.

Or “was returned by the bank”, according to a source at Croydon Council’s offices.

Payment for the planning application is estimated will have cost just a few hundred pounds. It was not banked by the council until last week, around two months late. Despite the delays in making the application and the payment, Croydon Council has not taken any enforcement action against the site’s developers, Menta Redrow.

The lovingly landscaped shed, or “marketing suite”, as the developers prefer it to be known, is the base from which Menta Redrow are busy flogging the luxury apartments in their “Amarelle” block, where a one-bed flat will set you back a cool £370,000 for a mere 534 sq ft of real estate.

Three-bed flats in another part of the development nearby are on the market from the developers for a thousand short of half a million pounds.

Documents seeking permission for “Erection of a single storey pavilion for temporary use as a sales and marketing suite with associated car parking and landscaping for a temporary period of 2 years ” at “Amarelle Apartments 41 Cherry Orchard Road” were originally drawn up on behalf of Redrow Homes in February this year, but were not submitted to Croydon Council until August. The carefully drawn architect’s drawings show the shed/marketing suite with two Porsche 911s parked outside…

The application for the marketing shed has attracted objections, including what is believed to be the first reference in formal council planning documentation to “The Bridge to Nowhere” – the term devised by Inside Croydon for what has become a £22 million folly.

Almost four years since the bridge at East Croydon Station opened, and there remains no access to Cherry Orchard Road or the Menta blocks of flats

Almost four years since the bridge at East Croydon Station opened, and there remains no access to Cherry Orchard Road

The property to the eastern side of the railway tracks, now being developed by a business trading as Menta Redrow, blocked Croydon Council and Network Rail from completing the access bridge at the north end of East Croydon Station, a publicly funded project which seems likely to increase the convenience, and therefore value, of the properties in the development.

But for almost four years, there has been no access to the bridge from the Cherry Orchard Road side as the tall and pricy Menta flats have been built.

The developers’ belated application for the marketing suite will be considered at a planning committee meeting next Thursday, together with strong objections from Labour councillor Sean Fitzsimons.

In his formal objections filed with the council’s planning department, Fitzsimons says, “It’s in breach of the current planning permission and conditions in regards this site granted previously to Menta. It is not an office block, or a  55-storey skyscraper, or delivers an entrance and bridge connection to East Croydon Station. It also delays the Council receiving its Section 106 money.

Sean Fitzsimons: dissatisfied with Menta Redrow's plans

Sean Fitzsimons: marketing suite is ‘an affront’

“As is common building practice, a marketing suite could have been incorporated into the Menta Redrow building, and can still be done.

“Good Meanwhile Use of this site has been curtailed and the site is underused to the detriment of the community. Boxpark across the tracks from this site shows how a site waiting for development can be used while waiting for permanent development to benefit of both the landowner and Croydon.

“It prevents the building of the new entrance and exit of the Bridge to Nowhere for the foreseeable future.

“It proves the existing granted application is not sustainable, as though house prices are at an all time high, the site is still not able to deliver the previously consented application.

“It’s an eyesore, and an affront to local residents.”

  • If you have a news story about life in or around Croydon, a residents’ or business association or a local event to publicise, please email us with full details at inside.croydon@btinternet.com

About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
This entry was posted in Addiscombe, Business, Cherry Orchard Gardens, Croydon Council, Housing, Menta Tower, Planning, Property, Sean Fitzsimons and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Marketing is not so sweet for Cherry Orchard Road flats

  1. davidjl2014 says:

    Who in their right mind would negotiate the purchase of a luxury apartment in a shed? It’s like going into The Ritz and ordering a hot-dog.

    Like

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