Local resident Michael Edwards asked at this week’s development control forum why the proposed Brill Place medical lab, which is facing strong local opposition, could not be sited on the King’s Cross development, where it would not require the abandonment of the democratically approved plans for Brill Place (which call for at least 50% housing on the site).
John Cooper, acting CEO of the UKCMRI consortium, said that while he wasn’t involved with the project at that time, he understood there had been discussions with the developer, but they had felt that there was only space for one institution on the site, which was the already planned University of the Arts complex.
Mr Edwards asked if the situation hadn’t changed, given the economic crisis and fall in demand for expensive flats and new offices, and added that he felt Mr Cooper had not thus far given an adequate answer.
Mr Coooper responded that a major investment had been made in the Brill Place land, and “decisions like that aren’t easily reversible”.
(Although of cause a slightly different consortium has already made a major reverse ferret, with the site of the National Temperance Hospital on the Hampstead Road in Regents Park ward – which it bought, then – oops, discovered was too small for the purpose – a plan about which the House of Commons Select Committee on Science and Technology had very severe doubts.)
More on the proposed UKCMRI development.