Coin Street's 'social enterprise skyscraper' gets go-ahead

Director angry at loss of charitable money spent on legal fees in case brought by English Heritage and Westminster City Council

A community development social enterprise has won its two-year battle to construct a £200m development on the south bank of the Thames in London.

A High Court judgement published yesterday will allow Coin Street Community Builders to go ahead with the development of its Doon Street project, which will include a 43-storey tower containing 329 flats, a swimming pool, a leisure centre, education and office facilities and dance studios.

The project, which is in Lambeth, received planning permission and approval from the Mayor of London in 2007, but Westminster City Council and English Heritage decided to contest the decision because they objected to the height of the tower.

Iain Tuckett, group director of Coin Street, said he was delighted by the result, but angered by the waste of time and by the waste of both taxpayers' and charitable money in legal fees.

Coin Street spent £75,000 in legal fees and had lost more money from the two years the site remained vacant, a spokesman for the organisation said.

Westminster Council insisted it had been right to bring the case.

"We are very disappointed that the court has allowed these towers to go ahead," said Robert Davis, deputy leader of the Conservative-run council. "They will be a blot on the landscape for generations to come.

"The impact these buildings will have on some of London's most popular visitor attractions is nothing short of architectural vandalism."

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Coin Street Community Builders

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