Travis Perkins branch also houses 572 students

Published:  08 June, 2018

Travis Perkins has built two mixed use development sites in London which combines branches with affordable housing.

Martin Meech, Group Property Director Jules Pipe, Deputy London Mayor for Planning, Regeneration & Skills, Paul Tallentire, CEO of the General Merchanting division at Travis Perkins, Cllr Stephanie Cryan, Cabinet Member for Housing Management and Modernisation and Nick Hayes, Property Director at developer Unite Students all attended a summit hosted by Travis Perkins to promote mixed use development sites.

As stated by Meech, “if this city is to survive, it needs a place for all the services that keep it going.” The cost of living in London is rising fast and so is its population. The solution Meech proposes is mixed use development sites, where builders’ merchant’s sites are combined with low-cost housing. The St Pancras branch combines 48,330 sq ft of land with housing for 572 students above it. So far, there have been no noise complaints from either party. The Battersea road branch has 64 standing housing flats above it, 28% of which are affordable.

Tallentire, emphasised the importance of a builders’ merchant being close to its customers and the buildings employees are working on for several reasons: so they can provide a collection service to the 200+ customers a day who visit; so HGVs can deliver stock efficiently; to save transport costs, otherwise the prices for customers would have to rise; and to cause less pollution from transport vehicles.

Travis Perkins has planning proposals for four more mixed use sites, but Tallentire called on London councillors to provide more locations help Travis Perkins continue to build these sites. This could be a case of securing new land or simply reusing old sites which have been abandoned. He requested that councils protect builders’ merchant’s sites, publish a register of land allocation for mixed use developments, and consider building these sites on public sector land.

Tallentire also stated that there was a risk to builders’ merchants of employees being priced out of living near or travelling to London. To solve this, he proposed discounted rent for people who work in essential services.

Pipe expressed support of mixed use development sites, saying they made the best use of land. He said: “The policies on mixed use developments set out in the Draft London Plan give councils the ability to take advantage of this innovative solution. The onus now lies on councils and developers to work together to identify eligible sites for these schemes. City Hall is firmly committed to supporting councils and their drive to increase the use of mixed use models in their boroughs.”

“The draft Plan sets ambitious targets for housing supply from 2020 and the Mayor and I strongly believe mixed use developments will play a crucial role in delivering these targets. Mixed use will also help to prevent the loss of business space in London, another key priority for the Mayor”.

Pictured (left to right): Martin Meech, Nick Hayes, Paul Tallentire, Cllr Stephanie Cryan, and Jules Pipe.

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