A bid by Hammersmith and
Fulham Council to issue a compulsory purchase order on part of the Earl’s Court
redevelopment site has been approved at a council meeting.
Capital and Counties’
proposed £12bn redevelopment scheme for the former Earl’s Court exhibition
centre and surrounding area has been delayed for over five years as a result of
disagreement between the council and developers. The scheme would see around
7,000 homes built, including the replacement of some local authority homes with
It is reported that
Hammersmith and Fulham Council are proposing to issue a CPO for just part of
the site in order to ‘unblock the stalemate’. However this could effectively
block redevelopment of the entire site.
Stephen Cowan, leader of
Hammersmith and Fulham Council, said: “When markets fail, the public sector
must step in. That’s precisely what we’re doing with the biggest compulsory
purchase order in modern history in order to deliver much-needed homes and
economic activity on the site.”
The Earl’s Court situation is a complex one, but the heart of the matter is the difficulty of reconciling public and private interest, especially in the London market. It is, however, difficult to see how compulsorily purchasing the site will simplify things.