Unlocking Wandsworth: Nine Elms project to transform forgotten area
Work is now well under way on transforming a former industrial district into Nine Elms on the South Bank.
Construction work has already began on Battersea Power Station and the new US Embassy, while flats St George’s Wharf and the Riverlight will be complete this year.
Up to 22,000 construction jobs are up for grabs between now and 2022 there will be 25,000 permanent jobs when the project is complete.
Alexandra Rucki takes an in depth look into the Nine Elms regeneration project in the first part of our Unlocking Wandsworth series.
The 11-storey embassy will be the centrepiece of Nine Elms, designed in the style of a giant glass cube.
There will be more than 800 American and British workers involved in the operation of the embassy.
It is expected to be complete by 2017, covering 54,000 sq m.
A bill past earlier this month in America prohibited any expense on the embassy, but a spokeswoman for the US consulate said this will not halt the construction of the building as it will now be entirely funded through the sale of the existing site at Grosvenor Square.
Security issues are of great importance with any US Embassy.
Acting Wandsworth borough Commander Chief Superintendant Paul McGregor said: “Wandsworth police has an excellent working relationship with the embassy as we do with other areas of the Nine Elms Development.
“Policing of embassies across London is the primary responsibility of the Met’s diplomatic protection group. The local borough will of course support our colleagues in keeping the area safe.”
The move over to Battersea is expected in 2017.
Battersea Power Station
The Grade II* listed building is being transformed into a mixed-use development.
There will be 200 shops, 248 homes and several venues located within the derelict power station, including a 2,000 person capacity venue.
A public viewing platform is being built inside the north-west chimney, providing visitors with a view of London from 110m up.
Construction began on the £8bn project last year and in January 2013 the first flats went on sale.
It is expected to be complete by early as 2016.
New Covent Garden Market
The largest fresh produce marker in the UK is being redeveloped to provide new facilities for traders.
Plans centre around new parkland, forming part of a linear park running from Vauxhall to Battersea Power Station and linking with the US Embassy Plaza.
There will be 1,600 new homes spread across nine new residential buildings around the park.
A Garden Heart building will act as the main hub of the market site, with a focus on food and flowers.
Covent Garden Market Authority offices will be located there, alongside a post office, bank, cafes and restaurants.
Six blocks are being constructed to the north and south between 11 and 17 storeys high.
Council leader - "There'll be jobs at all levels"
Councillor Ravi Govindia, leader of the council, said: “There is now activity right across Nine Elms.
"By and large it was a forgotten bit of the borough – nobody really lived there and many of the jobs were relatively low skill.
“There will be jobs in the Nine Elms construction phase and jobs at all levels.
“I am very hopeful we should build on the construction jobs and keep facility manager jobs once the places are built.
“I want to make sure these jobs are kept, 22,000 temporary and 25,000 permanent jobs.
“I think the over-arching thing for residents to take pride in is the borough is changing and changing for the better.
"It will have a new quarter for the 21st century and an international quarter not looking inward, but outward to the rest of London.”
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