New live / work / play plan for New Cross Road

I am a member of Goldsmiths' governing Council and have been waiting for a long time to share this news.

I joined the Council ready to bend everyone's ear about the importance the local community attached to the issue of Goldsmiths' derelict shop fronts on New Cross Road - but they already knew and had been working on a plan more ambitious than I would have thought to lobby for. They also gave this project top priority in their wider campus master plan. They have been on the case - they understand that if the area flourishes, they will benefit too.

Separately, I attended a presentation by the GLA last week about the growth of flexible work spaces across the capital. Their experts praised the work of Goldsmith's partner for this project - Meanwhile Space. Work starts shortly. It's very exciting but it's not even the most exciting aspect of the master plan - I look forward to being able to share more news in due course. Here's what the Goldsmiths team have to say:

"New life will be brought to some of Goldsmiths’ most visible buildings under an innovative partnership between the university and a leading community interest company.

"We have teamed up with the pioneering firm Meanwhile Space CIC to establish a hub for creative start-ups at 302 to 312 New Cross Road.

"The regeneration scheme will see new affordable work, living, retail and communal spaces created in and above the current shop fronts – with initial structural building works to begin this month[JUNE]. A planning application is currently with Lewisham Council for approval of the scheme and the full renovation of the buildings.

"The ground-breaking scheme will combine the four types of space in one location, providing a unique opportunity for innovative enterprise concepts to choose a combination of spaces to propel their idea.

"It is also a move which makes Goldsmiths one of the first universities in the country to enter into such a partnership.

"Capturing the vibrancy of New Cross, the project will be aimed at start-up businesses, Goldsmith’s alumni and stakeholders from across the local community.

"Patrick Loughrey, Goldsmiths Warden, said: “Goldsmiths is deeply rooted in New Cross, a vibrant area, already known for its creative spirit. We’re very excited to launch our New Cross Road project with Meanwhile Space and offer a new destination for creativity, innovation and enterprise to flourish.”

"Costumiers Prangsta will remain open while receiving structural improvements before
the renovation begins. Independently of this scheme, a new café is set to open in the space recently vacated by Café Crema.

"Work on the project is to begin later this month after Meanwhile Space signed an agreement to lease from Goldsmiths to operate the enterprise incubation scheme once the renovation works are complete. The renovations are due to be completed in the New Year.

"Funding for the renovation comes from an award of up to £430,000 to Meanwhile Space by the Department for Communities and Local Government – a figure matched by Goldsmiths.

"To help further explain the plans Meanwhile Space is hosting an exhibition at 310 New Cross Road, from 16 – 19 June 2015. The exhibition will be open 12-5pm daily with a late closing of 7pm on Thursday 18 June. All are welcome to drop in to find out more and inform the future of this project.

"Project Designers Ecos Maclean, Designers will be holding an informal co-design session for all interested parties from 12-4pm on 16 June. Come along for a chance to have direct input into the design process."


brockley fan said...

excellent news!

anonymouse said...

So what is going to happen to the existing businesses, Prangsta, Cafe Crema etc?

Brockley Nick said...

If you read the article, you just might find out!

PVP said...

Very good news indeed. Do you know if Lewisham Council were involved, and if so any ideas how it will impact their plans for flexible work spaces in Catford, Deptford, etc??

Brockley Nick said...

Yes, Lewisham Council have known all about this for a long time. I don't think it should have any impact on their plans - the presentation by the GLA I referred to outlined that there is an under-supply of these kinds of places across the capital.

anonymous said...

Knowing Lewisham Council, they will cause massive delays to this project to the point where the developers lose the will to live and then abandon the work all together. I'm hoping they don't but something I wouldn't put past Lewisham Council.

Gill said...

Lewisham Council are apparently already prevaricating over the planning application, according to Meanwhile. Hopefully they will realise that a refurbished and revitalised building will be a million times better than a derelict and abandoned one. Meanwhile Space have asked anyone interested to contact Lewisham Planning voicing their support for the project.

Matt said...

Can anyone find the planning application on Lewisham's Planning Portal? I had a look but couldn't see it. I would gladly write to the Council and support anything that would would see this eyesore dealt with.

It is an absolute disgrace that Goldsmiths have allowed these buildings to fall into such disrepair for such a long period of time. They have been a hideous blight on the New Cross high street for decades.

JosephJohnODonnell said...

But looking at the drawings it looks as if little restoration work will be done to the shop fronts. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity which looks like it will be missed.

anonymous said...

I wouldn't hold my breath. Lewisham Council doesn't spend a penny maintaining any sort of standards on the local high streets. Then they put up a battle when a developer comes in to do it.

terrencetrentderby said...

"This may be a shithole but it's our shithole".

seems to be the prevailing philosophy
at Tammany Hall.

anonymouse said...

Sorry it's a bit too long for my attention span...

mr dread said...

Let's hope they bring them up to the standard of the opposite side of the street; dodgy money laundering fronts, dodgy agencies, dodgy solicitors, dodgy massage parlours, dodgy kebab shops.

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