Local Liberal Democrat councillors have expressed dismay at Haringey Council’s approval of a controversial planning application. Cllr Scott Emery ‘called-in’ proposals to redevelop the shops at 1-9 Fortis Green Road in order to add flats. He feared that the plans would create a large bland façade out of keeping with the well-preserved Edwardian architecture of the surrounding area. There is also a risk that it will displace the popular small businesses currently based in the shops.
Speaking in opposition to the application at a meeting of the Council’s Planning Sub-Committee on June 3rd, Cllr Justin Hinchcliffe warned that:
“The application, if successful, would radically alter the celebrated charm and character of Fortis Green and Muswell Hill. It would be out of sync with the surrounding architecture. And it could leave some of our cherished independent and thriving small businesses homeless. This council rightly talks about the need to preserve all that but tonight it's time to back up such talk with action---- and vote accordingly.”
Speaking in response to the decision to approve the application, Cllr Scott Emery said that:
“The angry reaction in the gallery on Monday evening tells you everything you need to know. The Planning Committee heard from both local councillors and local residents why this application should not be allowed. It’s very disappointing that the committee ignored these reasons and went ahead regardless.”
Michael Silliton, of the Flower Seller at No. 1 Fortis Green Road, said that:
"We are saddened by Haringey's inability to take into account the four independent traders. We seemed to be the last consideration for the planning process."