Blocks either side of Empire House demolished

16 November, 2020 / by Matt Smith

Image above: Blocks on either side of Empire House being knocked down, Monday 16 November 2020; photograph Karen Liebreich

Work has now started on the demolition of the blocks on either side of Empire House on Chiswick High Road, to make way for new development.

The property’s previous owner, LendLease, sold the buildings to Great Marlborough Estates after putting the site up for sale two years ago. LendLease ran into substantial local opposition to its plans back in 2015.

A Chiswick resident, the late Simon Kverndal QC, put in an application for a Judicial Review of the development of Empire House and the Essex Place site. It was dismissed in the High Court on 28 October 2015.

Since then precious little has happened and the subsequent lack of development has blighted the section of Chiswick High Rd around Empire House. Many of the retail spaces have stood empty for years pending development.

‘Reimagine and reinvigorate’

Great Marlborough Estates plans to build 66 apartments in the office tower itself. At Essex Place, which sits behind Chiswick High Road, 46 apartments and four townhouses will be built, with a further 21 apartments developed at the corner of Essex Place and Acton Lane. The scheme is designed by Assael Architecture.

Grant Lipton, the founder of Great Marlborough Estates, said after the buildings were purchased:

“Whilst Covid-19 has undoubtedly created some uncertainty, we remain committed to the long-term outlook for London and the capital’s property market thanks to strong underlying fundamentals. London will remain a preeminent global hub for business, culture and leisure, all of which will feed into demand for housing in the city.

“Acquiring this site in Chiswick marks a significant milestone for Great Marlborough Estates, further expanding our portfolio across London. Alongside providing high quality, well designed new homes, the redevelopment of Empire House will further enhance Chiswick High Road and open up new opportunities for the local area providing a great place for those who live, work and visit Chiswick.”

Image above: Grant Lipton

Pete Ladhams, managing director at Assael Architecture, said:

“The redevelopment of this site presents a rare opportunity to reimagine and reinvigorate this part of Chiswick in a way that adds to the existing heritage and green space.

“We have enjoyed working with Great Marlborough Estates to repurpose the existing building to create a unique residential neighbourhood and a destination fronting on to Chiswick High Road. Our design has sought to remain contemporary, but sympathetic to the heritage and character situated on the bustling High Road and tranquillity of Turnham Green.”

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Residents group files for Judicial Review of Cycleway 9 installation

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