Monday, 03 June 2019 19:40

High density housing for High Barnet station?

Written by Robin Bishop
High Barnet Station from the east. Will the development be over the tracks – or the greenery? High Barnet Station from the east. Will the development be over the tracks – or the greenery?
According to a circular being distributed around Chipping Barnet, proposals are being developed to ‘improve’ the area around High Barnet station. These will include new public space and new homes, including affordable homes.

Members of the public are invited to an exhibition at High Barnet Station on:

  • Thursday 13 June (2-9pm)
  • Friday 14 June (2-8pm)
  • Saturday 15 June (10-4pm)

The development team will be at the exhibition to answer your questions, listen to your feedback and discuss your priorities for High Barnet.

The Barnet Society has no further information about the scheme, nor do we even know exactly where it would be located. However, we’ve been aware for some time that Transport for London has been looking at the feasibility of housing developments on surplus TfL land across London.

Studies have already been done of Tube stations such as Finchley Central and Golders Green. The Council is currently considering a planning application for 86 1 & 2-person flats beside Woodside Park Station (planning portal reference 19/1809/FUL). And railway stations such as New Barnet and Oakleigh Park are other possible development sites.

The Mayor of London favours such developments. His draft London Plan (due to be published later this year) states, ‘The potential for new housing within and on the edges of town centres should be realised through higher-density mixed-use or residential development, capitalising on the availability of services within walking and cycling distance, and their current and future accessibility by public transport…including…above existing transport infrastructure.’

In its response to the draft London Plan last year, the Society commented:

‘In principle transport hubs are logical places for intensified use, and there may be scope at our tube and rail stations for building above car parks, tracks and the stations themselves.

However there are considerable planning and technical challenges associated with all our existing hubs. High Barnet Station, for example, abuts the unstable 19th century embankment carrying the A1000 on Barnet Hill, and is surrounded by trees and the open hillside that was the historic site of Barnet Fair.

Barnet Hill (Station Approach on the left).  Will the development be at the top or bottom - or both?

Its natural surroundings makes it one of Chipping Barnet’s attractive ‘green gateways’ that would be lost if medium or high-rise development were permitted around or above the station.’

The developer says, ‘We are at an early stage in developing proposals, we want the local community to be fully involved in our proposals and your views will be crucial in shaping our plans as they develop.’

The Barnet Society is also very interested in your views. We’ll be scrutinising the plans, and will post our draft comments on this website after the exhibition.

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  • Comment Link Tuesday, 04 June 2019 00:11 posted by Nick Saul

    Can everyone at least agree any development at High Barnet Station MUST include 1) full funding for and construction of facilities for direct bus services to the town centre, 2) improved pedestrian access and 3) keeping a turning area and the present number of parking spaces for cars.

    At the moment the terminus would be more accurately named Low Barnet Station – the short trip to the town centre or even the nearest bus stop is a punishing uphill trek, particularly carrying or wheeling anything.

    35 years ago I was writing articles saying a frequent direct bus connection with the station was necessary for the prosperity of the town centre. Now I would say it is one of the few measures that could make a real contribution to saving it. Such direct access to the (literally) High Road and the Spires would also have significant and perhaps critical benefits both for residents of such new homes and town centre businesses.

    For decades I have heard ward councillors and other local campaigners report that London Transport and then Transport for London insist such a bus access to the station would cost an unaffordable (and implausibly exact) £100,000 and £250,000 respectively. I respectfully suggest that given the considerable budget for any development this facility should be insisted on as a planning gain by Barnet Council as the planning authority.

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 04 June 2019 00:31 posted by Nick Saul

    I should of course have specifically referred to the high desirability of more convenient bus links for the Northern Line terminus with Barnet Hospital which would also be created by direct bus access to the station.

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 04 June 2019 10:30 posted by Ruth Lederman

    High Density building of flats changes the area often attracting a transient community where lots of properties are bought buy to let. These apartments are normally very small and are not suitable for families with children. There is already pressure on local services and any new developments must have appropriate infrastructure provided. Many people live in High Barnet because it is generally safe, quite and boring with lots of green space not for its fantastic transport links. Change is not always for the better. We have seen this around Whetstone.

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 04 June 2019 16:56 posted by Aidan

    I always wondered why there couldn't be an underpass from platform level to the other side of Barnet Hill - with both steps and slope to the current bus stop going into the town. Maybe now is the time!

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 04 June 2019 20:27 posted by Linda OShea

    No No No not more flats for Barnet, there are already enough being planned and built. We do not have the infrastructure to deal with all the extra people, neither doctor surgeries, you cannot get an appointment now without more people coming into the area. The Mayor of London needs to stop messing with the outer boroughs.

  • Comment Link Friday, 07 June 2019 12:39 posted by Sandra

    I totally agree with Linda. Its getting ridiculous. We do not have the infrastructure to deal with extra people. This side of Barnet is still pleasantly green. Leave it alone. We are already in danger of losing Barnet Playing Fields and King George V Playing Field to development, a so called sports complex! I agree High Barnet Tube Station desperately needs modernising but not flats/houses. What's next on the agenda Hadley Common.

  • Comment Link Wednesday, 12 June 2019 13:43 posted by Howard Davies

    I think it's potentially a good idea if it's sensibly handled - which would consist of retaining / increasing the amount of station parking that's currently available, and limiting the development to low-rise residential on the semi-derelict site between the station car park and the railway bridge. Something along those lines could potentially smarten up the eastern side of Barnet Hill, which is currently in a pretty shabby state. But, obviously, I'll reserve judgement until I've had a chance to see the plans.

  • Comment Link Thursday, 13 June 2019 14:58 posted by keith

    There is so much more suitable land near underhill and Totterigdge academy, which does not have the problem of the emankment, and would there be much eadier to build on.
    It would also serve Totteridge academy and the new Ark Academy well as it would be essy walking distance and therefore present less problems with congestion.
    The area aroung High Barnet Station is a historic site, with archaelogical finds predating Roman Times, not to mention Batlle of Barnet.

  • Comment Link Thursday, 13 June 2019 16:30 posted by Simon Watson

    I haven’t been to the exhibition yet but from the website it seems like:

    All car parking goes which I suspect would have a terrible impact on the neighbouring streets

    And a tall block of flats on Meadway opposite QE girls school, building over what is currently mature trees

  • Comment Link Thursday, 13 June 2019 18:26 posted by Christine R

    I was at the station at 2.45, left by the 'ticket office' sign of any exhibition I thought I had the time wrong. Assume they have put it on the car park side, thus reducing the number of people who will see it! Not even a sign to suggest that the exhibition was on. Not exactly consulting the people of High Barnet.

  • Comment Link Friday, 14 June 2019 11:06 posted by David Martens

    A small (probably to many) but important concern for me, the stand of trees betwwen the A1000 (Barnet Hill) and the station itself, is home to many birds, and on early Spring mornings is alive with singing Song Thrushes and other birds.
    I understand thjs "mini nature reserve" will go and all this beauty will be lost....the trees which absorb pollution, give out oxygen and lessen the noise of the High Road.Not to mention the aesthetic quality...
    We need trees and greenery more than ever to stem climate change and moderate extreme heat.
    This is madness,greed and stupidity.
    This is not about housing shortage,this is about investors buying to let and making a nice profit. at the environment's expense.

  • Comment Link Friday, 14 June 2019 16:07 posted by Alan

    If you put 700 odd flats in and around the station it would completely change the feel and character of barnet from a green and pleasant outer suburb to just another inner city highly densly populated area.

  • Comment Link Saturday, 15 June 2019 10:57 posted by Allison McKechnie

    I assume new schools and doctors' surgeries will be built to cater for the influx of people into an area that is already stretched in terms of these services?

  • Comment Link Saturday, 15 June 2019 10:58 posted by Chris

    Agree with much of the above, especially the basic testing of infrastructure and need for sensible bus routes to Barnet General and the high street. Parking issues will follow, then social problems from the loss of character and green space. Shame to Victoria Bakery closing.

  • Comment Link Saturday, 15 June 2019 12:50 posted by Gavin

    Sad times for Barnet. I moved to the area from SE London 12 years ago because it was a nice green area which isn't built up and has a lovely historic feel to it. This development will change the demographic. We do not want Barnet to become inner London grime.

  • Comment Link Sunday, 16 June 2019 15:35 posted by LEONARD JORDAN



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