Planning Inspectorate says ruling not now expected until November
A decision on whether or not to allow Foster & Partners’ Tulip tourist tower to be built in the City of London has been delayed for a second time.
The Planning Inspectorate has written to all parties to last year’s public inquiry informing them that a ruling “will be made by way of a decision from government on or before 11 November 2021”.
It is the second time the decision has been pushed back in recent weeks.
Robert Jenrick was due to rule in late September but lost his job in the reshuffle, prompting the Planning Inspectorate to announce a three-week delay to “on or before October 14” while his successor as secretary of state for planning, Michael Gove, to get his feet under the desk.
Yesterday the City of London Corporation posted a notice on its website announcing a further delay of up to a month.
The tower, which will consist of a 12-storey glass viewing ‘pod’ perched on top of a slender concrete shaft, was approved by the City in April 2019.
But London mayor Sadiq Khan overruled the City on the grounds that the height of the tower violated its own planning policy for the cluster of towers where it would be built, which includes RSHP’s Cheesegrater and Fosters’ Gherkin.
The scheme’s developer, Bury Street Properties which also owns the Gherkin, launched an appeal.
The planning inquiry was held in November and December last year, with the scheme’s lead architect, Fosters’ Robert Harrison, rejected claims the tower’s design resembled a “watchtower in a prison camp”.
The inspector’s report was handed to the then MHCLG in July but its contents have not been made public.