Berkeley started construction work at One Tower Bridge in 2011. We are due to complete the development in early 2017. It contains 43 social rented apartments on part of the site owned by the Corporation of London. A commuted sum of £10.51 million has also been paid by Berkeley to the London Borough of Southwark towards affordable housing provision across the borough.
Last week, Southwark's Planning Committee agreed some variations to the original planning legal agreement. These included modifications to the access arrangements for Corporation of London residents to a semi-private communal garden that sits on a podium at first floor level between two buildings.
The Corporation of London had previously expressed concerns about the maintenance costs associated with their own communal roof gardens as well as the level of their service charge. These issues are exacerbated by access to the podium garden which brings with it a separate additional service charge that pays for management and maintenance of the garden, access through one of the private blocks and maintenance of the access areas.
Changing the access arrangements for Corporation of London residents to the podium garden now means they will not have to pay a higher service charge. It also has no significant impact on the level of amenity they enjoy.
This is for two reasons: firstly, there are no facilities (such as children's play equipment) within the podium garden which the Corporation of London residents could benefit from; secondly, the Corporation of London residents still benefit from a very large amount of their own communal space. This is 316% over the minimum policy requirement.
In reality, the affordable housing residents on this development will enjoy three times as much communal amenity space per home as the private residents. Every affordable home on this site enjoys two substantial roof-top communal gardens with amazing views over the river Thames, Tower of London and Tower Bridge.
We are very proud that One Tower Bridge is genuinely tenure blind in terms of architecture, quality of materials, space standards and amenities.
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