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Ridley Road Shopping Village: Decision on controversial plans delayed due to coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 09:48 02 April 2020 | UPDATED: 10:31 02 April 2020

The Save Ridley Road banner hanging from the Ridley Road Shopping Village.

The Save Ridley Road banner hanging from the Ridley Road Shopping Village.

Archant

Controversial plans to redevelop Ridley Road Shopping Village were meant to be decided on by councillors on Wednesday but the meeting was postponed.

Proposals to clear out the indoor market and the artist’s studios above it were revealed in 2018 but have been held up due to the huge backlash from the local community and the council’s insistence on more affordable workspace.

The market, which is made up of traders selling everything from clothes and textiles to furniture and records is currently closed due to the coronavirus lockdown, though the council-run street market is still open.

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In December landlord Rainbow Properties submitted amended proposals to renovate and expand the indoor market, building five luxury flats and high-end office space, as well as 22 “retail units” for market traders on the ground floor.

Protesters gather outside Ridley Road Shopping Village for a protest in 2018. Picture: Polly HancockProtesters gather outside Ridley Road Shopping Village for a protest in 2018. Picture: Polly Hancock

The plans also include 10 per cent affordable workspace, as per council policy. Traders will be given first refusal on the new units - but it will be at market rent, which many won’t be able to afford.

The Gazette understands the meeting to decide its future will take place sometime this month. The Coronavirus Act allows authorities to hold virtual meetings in public, and the council is working on the best way to do that.

The Save Ridley Road group, who believe the move symbolises the gentrification of Dalston and want traders to be protected, were expected to stage a protest outside the town hall on the night of the meeting. That will now not happen and it is not yet known how they plan to oppose the project.

For all our coverage on the Ridley Road Shopping Village plans, click here.


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