Broadway Market flats plan sparks concern for independent traders
Plans to bulldoze workshops near Broadway Market will push out successful businesses, according to residents and traders who are against the scheme.
Developers Notting Hill Housing want to demolish the Westgate Centre in Westgate Street and build a six-storey block of flats with offices on the ground floor.
Housing bosses say existing workshops – used by companies from florists to ironmongers – will be replaced.
But campaigners fear the loss of parking space and the nature of the new development will force traders to move out – and take jobs with them.
“There is not a single company I can think of that will be able to stay at the site,” said Andrew Boff, who lives next to the centre and is a member of Broadway Market Tenants and Residents Association (BMTRA).
You may also want to watch:
“We’re not being NIMBYs about this – it’s the fact that they are getting rid of jobs that upsets us. But Notting Hill Housing doesn’t care about jobs. They want a profit margin on the investment they made on the site.”
- 1 Three men charged following Hackney shooting
- 2 70 firefighters tackle Old Street tower block blaze
- 3 Your Paper, Your Voice: We want to hear from you
- 4 Jailed: Newham men who raped and robbed women in Hackney home
- 5 Hackney schoolgirl and actress Bukky Bakray wins Bafta
- 6 NEU members continue strike action at Leaways
- 7 Roads, Museum of the Home, Living Wage and child exploitation
- 8 Lottery winners build nesting boxes for Woodberry Wetlands birds
- 9 Police hunt Ilford man after shooting in Hackney
- 10 Mare Street Narroway see's queues for Primark and independent shops reopen on April 12
He added that the lack of demand for office space in the area could see the new units taken over by a supermarket chain.
Richard Thompson, of The Doorstep Laundry, said he knew of the development plans when he set up his company at the centre four years ago but that he would still be unhappy to leave.
“It is a great little community of businesses here – we are all cottage industries really – and it would be a shame if that went.”
He urged housing bosses to offer commercial space to existing tenants.
A spokeswoman for the developers said: “Notting Hill’s intention, if granted the several permissions sought from Hackney Council, is to replace the existing workshops with the same amount of modern workspaces with flats above. Many of these flats will be affordable housing for Hackney residents in housing need.
“If the development goes ahead, Notting Hill would be more than happy to let some or all of the space to the existing occupiers. We’d need to ensure that any business was compatible with being in the same building as residents.”