Landmark riverside regeneration project is granted planning approval

Planning approval has been granted for Clifton Slipways, a contemporary mixed-use project on West Street in Gravesend, which promises to ensure a long-awaited riverside regeneration becomes a reality.

Last night (Wednesday, 22 July) Gravesham Borough Council approved the application for the landmark project, which seeks to unlock a strategic brownfield site and is intended to act as a catalyst for further investment in the town centre.

Clifton Slipways is led by Quinn Estates, one of the South East’s leading mixed-use developers, and has been designed by award-winning architects, Hollaway. The decision by the planning committee represents the culmination of over 18 months of work to create a proposal which delivers significant regeneration benefits and reflects the feedback received during consultation.

A £2.9 million restoration of the West Street Pier is at the centre of the scheme. The derelict Victorian pier has been in disrepair for half a century.  A start-up business hub at Pier Works, as well as 2,600 sq. m of new public realm and the creation of over 100 long-term jobs are just part of Quinn Estates’ plans for breathing new life into the historic pier and reconnecting Gravesend and its residents with the Thames.

227 new one and two bedroom riverside apartments, will be just a 10-minute walk from Gravesend train station, with its 24 minute route to London St Pancras. Of these new homes, 10% will provide affordable Discount Market Rent helping to meet local housing need and will prioritise essential workers.  

The wider development will include substantial investment in public realm improvements, including traffic calming and wider cycle and footpaths along West Street and Stuart Road. The proposals also provide new and improved flood defences to protect Gravesend against the impact of climate change.

Now that the project has been granted planning permission, there will be a focus on rapid delivery and construction is planned to commence onsite in Q1 2021. Quinn Estates has worked closely with its local supply chain to ensure the project will deliver local jobs throughout the construction phase.

Ben Geering, Development Director at Quinn Estates, said: “We are delighted by Gravesham Borough Council’s decision to approve Clifton Slipways.

“This high-quality scheme can now be at the heart of Gravesend’s regeneration, providing significant investment of over £4.3 million in S106 agreements and providing homes and jobs for the town, supporting local businesses and services. By making the best use of a derelict site to create a landmark development and more than half an acre of riverside public space, the project will reconnect the town and its people with the Thames. 

“Over the past 18 months, Quinn Estates has worked proactively to respond to matters raised by consultees and stakeholders and ensure our proposals reflected them, so this is a positive decision. 

“Last night’s vote means we can progress without delay to deliver much-needed riverside regeneration at Clifton Slipways. Construction is planned to start onsite in Q1 2021.” 

The Clifton Slipway site has had an extensive planning history and extant consent, which makes it a typical Quinn Estates project – taking a difficult scheme that many consider unviable and re-working it to deliver hugely significant economic, environmental and social gains. The construction phase of the development will also secure hundreds of direct and indirect jobs for local people.

For more information on Clifton Slipways, please click here.