North Greenwich developments
Visitors to the Dome at North Greenwich will be astonished at the pace of development around the extraordinary O2 venue. A cluster of high rise apartments along the river are well under construction. The ‘stepped’ design provides spacious balconies, landscaped to make garden-like seating areas providing spectacular views across the river. Knight Dragon – the developers – are creating a ‘tranche’ of high rise structures linking the O2 towards the ever-extending Millennium Village.
The high rise Intercontinental Hotel and its neighbouring lofty apartment block provide dramatic cross-river views onto Canary Wharf. The recent international tennis tournament provided an additional tented village for the occasion on the riverside open space, best seen from the Emirates cross-river cable car.
Major redevelopment of the prize-winning underground concourse will re-jig it to provide glazed structures at each of the four corners spanning over the tunnel entrance towards the river. A new Crystal Palace indeed, providing even more restaurants, cafes and living accommodation at the heart of this new city, with its excellent Jubilee Line underground system.
Plans are also been proposed for a new ‘Lunar’ experience to be sited where the Prime Meridian crosses the Thames, which will be best viewed from high rise buildings on both sides of the river. The remote site alongside the Thames Path is just where the Greenwich Pavilion stood during the Millennium celebrations.
Close by is the threatened Gas Holder, which has stood forlorn since the demolition of the massive gas works. The usual debate is heating up, just like the proposed neighbouring Cruise Ship Terminal site (recently purchased by another large corporate).
The relocated ship yard just by Victoria Deep Water Terminal is as busy as ever, as is the extensive aggregate wharf handling the massive tidal Thames new sewerage system which requires constant tug and barge movement for the massive slurry spoil coming from the giant new engineering works tunnelling under the river from Brentford to Crossness. River passengers will spot the various sites on both sides of the river – a new wharf at Norman Road will bring more barge traffic back to Deptford Creek just like in the old days when coastal traffic buzzed with activity.
The view from my riverside house is fascinating at dusk as Canary Wharf is ablaze with light, and really bright warning lights flicker on all sides as construction cranes mark the ever-increasing development sites. The dignified illumination on the Greenwich waterfront is worth inspecting from the Thames Path adding to the on-coming festivities in our streets – we have promised to create an Advent window to be viewed by passers-by in humble Crane Street.