Thursday, 25 February 2010

Brick Lane Arches: Tower Hamlets planning to go ahead despite objections?

From the Evening Standard

Planners back ‘hijab gates’ for Brick Lane despite 158 objections

Terry Kirby

A proposal to build “hijab gates” at either end of Brick Lane has failed to attract a single letter of support from locals, a council report shows.
But the plan for the arches — which have been compared to giant headscarves — has attracted 158 objections. Despite this Tower Hamlets officials are recommending its development committee approve the scheme next Thursday.
The arches would form part of a £2 million “heritage trail”. Critics have accused the council of dividing the community by emphasising Islam above other faiths. Others say the arches resemble something from Disneyland.
Objectors include the Spitalfields Trust and the local synagogue. Resident Will Palin, secretary of Save Britain's Heritage, said: “To press ahead in the face of such opposition would be an insult to the people of the borough.”
Another local, Tracey Emin, has called the design “bulky, ungainly and unnecessary”.
The council says the arches are not “culturally specific to Islam” and structures have been used to denote areas such as Chinatown and Carnaby Street. The report is on its website. Thursday's meeting is at the town hall in Clove Crescent.

Read the Tower Hamlets' Case Officers' report - 7.1 Brick Lane Arches

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