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“Stadium Showdown: Spurs’ Legal Battle Ends in Defeat for Residential Development Opposite Their Ground”

Tottenham Hotspur Football Club has lost its legal battle to halt the proposed £2 billion mixed-use development opposite its North London stadium. The Premier League initiated legal action against Haringey Council’s decision to grant housebuilder Lendlease permission to construct 2,929 residential units and up to 445,000 square feet of commercial and community space.

The council claims that the development will offer various public benefits, such as parks, commercial areas, a new library, and numerous social-rent homes. However, some residents, whose homes and businesses will be demolished for the project, have strongly criticized the plans.

The football club’s legal team contended that the High Road West development, situated next to the club’s 62,850-capacity stadium, failed to adequately consider “heritage impacts” and crowd control concerns. Nevertheless, High Court Judge Sir Pushpinder Saini ruled in favor of the development, which is now expected to be completed by 2034.

Judge Saini, in his ruling, dismissed the claims, stating that the heritage impacts were “legally identified” and were deemed to be outweighed by the substantial public benefits the project would provide. He also noted that the council had thoroughly reviewed crowd safety materials, sought advice from an independent expert, and had “legally established a comprehensive mechanism for key stakeholders to collaborate reasonably and consult with one another, including the police.”

Justice Saini added that planning committee members “were not misled”.

In his ruling, he explained: “On the evidence before me, it is clear that in satisfying itself that it was appropriate to grant planning permission, the council reviewed the material on crowd safety submitted…and the criticisms of it put forward by the claimant; and it sought expert advice from an independent expert.

“The planning assessment of public benefits is clear. There is a clear development plan support for this development and the regenerative impacts of the scheme are of overwhelming significance in the planning balance.

“In my judgment, the council was lawfully satisfied that the planning permission created a framework, which would ensure that the access to the stadium (which was a key planning consideration) would be satisfactorily achieved without unreasonable impact on the claimant.”

Commenting on the ruling, David Joyce, director of placemaking and housing at Haringey Council, said: “We are pleased with the High Court judgement. The decision is an endorsement that the council’s planning authority acted lawfully in the granting of planning permission for the scheme.

This is the biggest regeneration programme in Haringey’s history, delivering 500 high-quality council homes as well as major investment in new open spaces, community facilities and local jobs and training opportunities. It is a new beginning for the community in Tottenham and delivering for them remains our top priority.

“As we take the next steps, we will continue to listen to the views of residents and local stakeholders and work together to shape the scheme’s design, the layout of the new homes and the community improvements.”

Earlier this month, the football club unveiled revised plans to build 287 student bedspaces in blocks up to six-storeys high near the stadium.

Spurs had previously been given consent for 72 homes, including 23 affordable homes, and a cinema on the site of a former printworks on Tottenham High Road, in January 2022.

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