CHURCH HAS APPLIED FOR CHANGE FO USE OF CP CINEMA

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downthehill
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Post by downthehill »

plus there is evidenec in the Haveriing Planning appeal that thsoe attending the Wlathamstow site arrievd by car in 62 to 72% of cases.

That's 300 cars at 0.62 x 500 that would be trying to cram into already busy streets and 713 if the full 1150 capacity was used - all arriving at teh same tiem for an 11 o'clock service

To put it in perspective Sainsbury's car park holds 280 cars!
Trawlerman
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Location: Sydenham

Post by Trawlerman »

Sounds awful...
Just wondered...Is this the 'get rich quick...God wants you to make plenty of cash 'church' '?
leenewham
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Post by leenewham »

Yes.

But aside from that, this should be a cinema. The church can buy any building. There are lots around. Why do they have to take away this valuable local asset?
Trawlerman
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Post by Trawlerman »

OK.
I fully agree.

No contest.
downthehill
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Post by downthehill »

Latest news on the application


Date for Bromley Planning Committee deferred to
Thursday 17 December
The unprecedented response by local residents to the Picture Palace Campaign has highlighted the need for a cinema to be restored to 25 Church Road.

As a community we maintain that the key component for the immediate regeneration of Crystal Palace is to retain the only significant building with a D2 (Entertainment & Leisure) use. It is also essential to maintain a balance of uses in the district centre to maintain and promote vitality and economic growth.

The application for change of use by the Kingsway International Christian Centre (KICC - The Applicant) is now scheduled to go before Bromley Council’s planning committee at 7pm on Thursday, 17th December. It was originally scheduled for 26 November but was deferred for a number of reasons which will be explained.

1. Traffic and Parking Impact:

The first reason relates to Bromley’s highways’ engineer’s concerns around the adequacy of parking provision, the sufficiency of data, and the assumptions included in the Applicant’s Transport Assessment (TA).

The highways’ engineer assessment of the original TA considered that the potential traffic and parking impact of the application had been underestimated, giving rise to concerns that it could have adverse impacts on highway safety and the free flow of traffic and should be refused as being contrary to Policies T3, T6 and T18 of Bromley’s UDP. (see Appendix 1 of the Supplemental TA dated 19 October)

In an attempt to mitigate those concerns, KICC requested a meeting with Bromley Council, held on 6 November, where it was agreed by the Council that KICC could submit additional information in support of its application and to mitigate the concerns of Bromley’s highways’ engineer.

KICC have now submitted a second Supplemental Transport Assessment (STA). The key points are:

Car use – KICC now concedes that the original estimate of 34 cars arriving on Sunday for a service of up to 500 congregants was incorrect. It has now submitted a new estimate of 49 to 63 cars. This is based on an estimate of approximately 30% car use with 3 persons per car for congregations of between 500 and 600. KICC argues that most of the congregation would be travelling from Wimbledon and Norbury and that the high public transport accessibility levels for Crystal Palace and data gathered from surveys at the Wimbledon and Norbury chapels support these estimates.

Notably KICC argues that these car levels can be absorbed by existing on-street parking but has extended the streets it says are available to provide parking spaces to cover an even wider area. Originally the target zones for parking consisted of the following streets: Anerley Hill up to the Crystal Palace Park entrance, Jasper Road, Milestone Road, Patterson Road, St Aubyns Road, Telford Close, Brunel Close and Woodland Road.

The new target zones for parking have now been extended to include even more roads: Belvedere Road, Bowley Close, Braybrooke Gardens, Church Road (from Fox Hill to Queens Hotel), Cintra Park, Farquhar Road, Fox Hill, Lansdowne Place and Tudor Road.

Finally KICC’s STA claims that car use and parking stress will be less than that experienced when Gala Bingo hall was open.

We would ask you to draw your own conclusions as to the accuracy of these estimates and the claims.


2. Size of Congregation and Number of Services:

The second reason - Whilst KICC is confident that the forecast maximum congregation size of 500 is correct – as stated in the original planning statement – the applicant has now advised Bromley that it is willing to accept a planning condition limiting the maximum attendance to 600 persons.

Whilst that is a movement towards some certainty of numbers, we suggest that such a condition would not influence car use levels. Planning conditions restricting numbers in a building may not translate into how the 600 congregants choose to travel to a service. In addition we question whether the conditions, if breached, could be monitored, bearing in mind it would involve monitoring numbers on a Sunday by a local authority planning officer.

KICC, on its own initiative, has also submitted revised floor plans. It is now proposing that two additional semi-glazed community rooms with foldable partitions be constructed at the rear of the auditorium flanked by exhibition space, which it states “would have the effect of reducing the total floor seating capacity to 630, significantly less than the existing capacity of 1,150”.

Nevertheless, we would contend that the original planning statement has not been changed and should be treated as an accurate expression of growth plans regardless of the reduced seating capacity.

The proposed condition on numbers does not extend to any condition limiting the number of services, so the position is still that the service numbers are "indicative", not guaranteed.
This is of considerable concern given KICC’s indication that 25 Church Road will be home to its South London Headquarters, and the indication in the planning statements that it intends to draw its congregation from across the South West, South East, Kent & Surrey. And the fact that 25 Church Road is one of KICC’s biggest sites.
KICC is a pentecostal church and based on the idea of expansion. Any figure should be read as a minimum because the church will work hard to attract new people to join the congregation from day one. Indeed, it would be extraordinary if KICC didn't seek to maximise use of a building it has spent £1.25 million to acquire. It is notable that this building has been bought, whereas most other KICC premises are rented community halls or school halls which are not required on a Sunday by existing users.
We also suggest that the indicative numbers of 500-600 and one service needs to be scrutinised in the light of KICC known history of expansion. For example:
 In 1992 it held services for 300 at a rented hall in Holloway.

 By 1993 it had purchased and renovated a building in Hackney that seated 1,000 and then built another children’s church immediately next door.

 By 1997 it purchased a site at Waterden Road in Hackney that seated 3,500.

 Between 1997 and 2007 KICC made strenuous attempts to find a site that was even bigger than Waterden Road. Those efforts included an abandoned plan to open a 3,000-seater church at Woodberry Down (Hackney) and culminated in the now defunct application for planning permission to develop an 8,000-seat church at Beam Reach, Havering.

 KICC bought another former cinema at Hoe Street in Walthamstow. Initially it was bought as a youth church but it is currently being used to host 6 back-to-back services on a Sunday of up to 1,000 persons per service.

 KICC describes itself as the fastest-growing church in western Europe and has a mission statement that includes increasing its congregation from 12,000 to 25,000 over the coming years.

 Over and above the focus on large sites between 1993 and 2009, KICC also bought, leased or rented other premises, so that by 2009 it operates from:

o 1 central church HQ, the Land of Wonders, 487-474 Hoe Street Walthamstow
o 4 branches in London and the South East
o 15 Chapels in London and the South East

We would ask you to draw your own conclusions as to the likely impact of the church and the adequacy of the plans provided.


3. Community Consultation:


Following the post application discussions with Bromley Council, KICC has offered the use of the proposed two new rooms within the building for community uses such as Scouts or a Cinema Club: “Such activities would generally be restricted to weekday evenings except Tuesday. Attendances would be limited to the community rooms.” (Item 2.2.2 of Hyder’s 2nd Supplemental Transport Assessment dated 23 November 2009.)

The deferment of the planning committee is also to give the KICC a further opportunity to engage in community consultation.

Why? - because of the Applicant’s failure to undertake pre-application consultation as requested by Bromley Council back in August 2009. We have also previously pointed out that in addition to planning requirements to enter into community consultation, KICC, as a registered charity, is advised by the Charity Commission that, “Some charity projects involving the acquisition of land arouse opposition locally, even to the extent of active hostility. Where this is likely, trustees are advised to plan carefully in advance, to consult widely and to provide full information about their proposals and the reasons for them.”
Despite Bromley council deferring the date of the planning committee and politely requesting that the Applicant undertake community consultation, albeit voluntarily, we note that to date no community consultation has materialised.
This is particularly disappointing when KICC’s planning consultant believes “that planning consultants must engage with both professional colleagues and local residents at an early stage in order to promote a scheme to a wide audience and as a way to identify planning and non-planning issues of local concern that could be dealt with by a proposed scheme.”
The offered use of two community rooms for scouts and a cinema club is symptomatic of the failure to consult because, had KICC undertaken minimal consultation it would be immediately apparent that these services are available elsewhere in the area. There is at least one not for profit film society, Crystal Palace Pictures, run by the community, for the community at the Gipsy Hill Tavern and, films are also shown in other local pubs during the week. Demand for a cinema club, rather than a commercially run cinema showing new releases, is met already. Demand for a cinema club, rather than a commercially run cinema showing new releases, is met already.
We also query why scout troops would use the community rooms when local scouts and other such groups are well established with existing local premises.
One inference that could be drawn from the KICC’s inaction over consultation and the suggestion of these new “community” rooms without researching what the community actually needs, is that rather than consult with the community, as they are obliged to do and as Bromley Council has asked them to do, they prefer to impose themselves upon us without any attempt at dialogue to truly assess and take account of the community’s views and wishes

We would ask you to draw your own conclusions.


4. Community space

Finally, the Applicant’s proposal now includes an external Community Space, an outside community shelter on Church Road.

We would ask that the community carefully considers whether this is of significant benefit or in any way mitigates the wider impact of the proposal. We note with interest that Broadway Malyan, the KICC’s planning consultant, has previously stated that “Often small changes to schemes or commitment to funding a particular local issue such as providing additional play equipment for local play groups or planting over and above that required for the site goes along way to winning over the hearts and minds of local people and councillors.”

We would ask you to draw your own conclusions as to whether your hearts and minds are won over by this new proposal.

Access to the new documents

The new documents are available at: http://tinyurl.com/kiccapp. We would urge you to look at them.


What will happen next?

Over the next couple of weeks Bromley will reconsult everyone that previously made a representation and is included on their consultation database. There is no statutory obligation for the Council to do this but due to the volume of objections received and the sensitivity of the application, Bromley has decided to give the community an opportunity to make further comments, although the original grounds of objection remain valid.

What you can do to help

We would ask you if you have time, please review the revised proposals and new STA. Then respond by emailing planning@bromley.gov.uk with your name, address and postcode, quoting the original application reference: 09/02202/FULL1 stating that your original objection still stands.

However, we believe the most important thing that the community can do is attend the meeting at Bromley Civic Centre on the 17th December to show the strength of support for retaining the D2 Leisure use.

Please check out the map and travel details, and if you would like to car share please contact us.

Other news

On a lighter note we're proud to announce our latest celebrity supporters. Ken Russell, Mark Thomas and Kathy Lette have all given their support to the campaign.

We are also pleased to announce that we are documenting the campaign and the overwhelming support it has received from the community. So if you see the cameras rolling around the Triangle make sure you flash your campaign t-shirts, hoodies and badges.

And finally, a massive thank you to everyone that has supported the campaign so far, let’s keep up the momentum and bring a cinema back to 25 Church Road.
simon
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Post by simon »

Just a couple of observations;
Are the opponents to the plan motivated because they don't want a church or because they want a cinema?
Was there a campaign to change the site from bingo hall to a cinema?
When there was a plan to build a cinema complex on Crystal Palace Parade there was widespread opposition to it, have those opponents changed their mind about the need for cinema in the area?
TBH, Im not really botherd either way about what happens. I dont live there and dont go to church. I sometimes see independent films in the West End and would probably continue to do so. Can see mainstream films in Beckenham. It just seems to me that a lot of this campaign is anti church as opposed to pro-cinema and is a classic case of middle class noveau atheism.
I would have been quite happy for it to remain a bingo hall.
leenewham
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Post by leenewham »

• They want a cinema which is clear from the website. I agree with them.
• There is a massive difference between building on the site of the building that gave the area it's name and opening a cinema in a building that is intended to be a cinema.
• I think it would be of huge benefit to the area. I hardly go to central london as I don't work there anymore. I'd love a choice of cinemas in the area. Currently there is one in Beckenham. There isn't one in the borough of Lewisham. Crystal Palace has 9 churches I believe.
stuart
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Post by stuart »

Motivation for objections should be irrelevant. It is the quality and relevance of the objection that should count.

The key one IMHO is the parking/traffic issue. It is one where the KICC position is weakest and indicates to me that KICC has, and is, seeking to seriously mislead the council and the community. If they are guilty of this then their other claims are also seriously undermined.

What shot out to me is their claim the impact would be less than when it was a Bingo Hall. Do they have any evidence for this?

I would find that amazingly surprising. The Bingo Hall was patronised (insufficiently) mainly by (sorry to be patronising) dear old souls who lived nearby. Congestion was more likely to be by zimmer frame than by car. When did Gala last have a 600 (or even half that) attendance?

In contrast KICC is patronised by a younger more affluent congregation who are mostly not local. Public transport is largely limited to bus with inconvenient train services disrupted most Sundays. In other words I would like to have some evidence that the majority will not come by car. I'm willing to conceed 3/4 per vehicle but the minimum count based on the above is at least 100 cars on their current plans with the possibility of much more with mission creep!

Supposing they find somewhere to park - this will be displacing existing people parking. Probably not too many residents who will have parked the night before. The real impact will be on people coming to Crystal Palace to shop, eat and drink. In other words they will be forced to go somewhere else. This is a grave impact on local business. I don't see much compensation from the congregation - who mostly will just commute in and back and not stick around for lunch in town (probably drinking/eating on-site).

In other words this development does nothing for the community or local business but has serious downsides.

Now if they could do a deal with Sydenham's Savacentre - big building, plenty of parking ... not used for most of Sunday ...

Stuart
stuart
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Post by stuart »

I should add as an addendum that the pavement along that road is notoriously narrow. Meeting somebody coming the other way with a pram can mean stepping into the street. The idea of 600 entering or exiting in a period of say 10 minutes may cause severe pedestrian congestion. With that and crossing the road - it is likely to cause grid lock. Because it is one leg of the one way system - that would grid lock the whole triangle. That also has a knock on effect on public transport when just when is need most (if we are to believe many would actually use it).

I suppose we ought to add-in the vehicles that will need to stop right outside the front doors (or do they have no disabled?).

Chaos is very, very high risk. It is really up to KICC to be able to convince people with a high degree of certaincy otherwise. At the very least I would like to see a traffic simulation of moving 600 people into and out of Crystal Palace and the Cinema. It might be very revealing ...

Stuart
downthehill
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Post by downthehill »

The Planning officers reports is now published and can be read here (from page 167)

http://sharepoint.br...pplications.pdf

It recommends refusal but the final decision rests with the councillors who sit on the planning committee

The report confirms 1250 letters and e--mail of objection plus 2343 postcards. Let' just hope Bromley recognises the wishes of the community

Whilst the campiagn would indeed like a cinema at the site the more fundamental point is retainng the ONLY D2 classified building in our town centre and a firm beleif that a leisure use, open to all and patronised with local custom will be far more beneficial than a large church which would attract large volmes of cars for single trip puposes and little or no economic benefit.

The fight over the multiplex was an entirely different story. That was 10 to 15 screens with 30 bars. It's hardly inconsistent to oppose that but support the idea of asmall independent cinema which would generate jobs, indirect employment and wealth creation and regeneration.

Fine if you don't care because it's not on your manor - bet you wouldn't be saying that if Sydenham High Street was facing the prospect of 600 people all turning up for 11:00 AM on a Sunday from the whole of the south east and trying to park in your street from 10 in the morning until 2 in the afternoon.

It's not anti church , it is anti a change of use to enable an unsuitable, ill conceived and damaging change to our town centre which will have major, and irreversible , repurcussions for years to come. Still with an attitude of "dont' care cos it's not here" compared to the passion the campaign has generated in CP to protect and enhance our area I know where I'd rather live, regardless of what happens at the planning committee meeting on the 17th
jmc
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Post by jmc »

downthehill wrote:Still with an attitude of "dont' care cos it's not here" compared to the passion the campaign has generated in CP to protect and enhance our area I know where I'd rather live
It's 4am and I've had a bit to drink, but my instinct still tells me 'having a go' at Sydenham, on a Sydenham Community website isn't the best way to gather support amongst Sydenham'sters.
Weeble
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Post by Weeble »

downthehill wrote:It recommends refusal but the final decision rests with the councillors who sit on the planning committee
I'm glad they've seen sense - the potential impacts on traffic are clearly much greater than KICC have been trying to maintain.

With the planning report recommending refusal and significant public opposition, it would surely be insane of the planning committee to grant the change of use. Fingers remain crossed.
Big Ben
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Post by Big Ben »

Fantastic news that the planning officers are recommending refusal and fingers crossed that the councillors will make the same decision. I'm sure that if the long-overdue cinema gets to see the light of day there will be plenty of Sydders folk beating a path to its door! Thank you Downthehill for keeping us up to speed on the application.
SydenhamHillAndy
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Post by SydenhamHillAndy »

If they lose the planning permission is there any evidence that a) they will sell the site or b) that they are prepared to sell to the cinema at a loss?

Isn't there a real danger that a giant bolt of lightning will be sent from above to kill all of us anti campaigners?
Psi
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Post by Psi »

Has anyone considered the idea of approaching this problem from a different angle? If the church were to lease the cinema to a company to operate it as a commercial cinema through the week apart from Sunday mornings/early afternoon (and by the sounds of it on a Tuesday evening). On Sunday morning/early afternoon and Tuesday evening the church could use it for their services.

As the building would continue to be used for the same use for most of the time I imagine planning rules would allow a temporary usage a few hours a week for a different use from the normal one. This would allow both a cinima and the church to use it.

I will admit this does not address the issue of cars or the access of the numbers but it could be a suggestion to get the church thinking differently about the use of the building.
simon
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Post by simon »

Does anyone know what the latest is on this issue please?
nork1
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Post by nork1 »

Bromley turned the KICC change of use application down:
http://www.yourlocalguardian.co.uk/news ... celebrate/

Loads of info on here:
http://www.virtualnorwood.com/forum/top ... __st__1170
simon
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Post by simon »

Thanks Nork, looks like it depends on whether the Church appeals.
leenewham
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Post by leenewham »

They don't appeal to me. A cinema does.

It's good news.

However it's a shame the church has said "“if planning permission was not forthcoming the building would just be allowed to fall into disrepair.”

Not very Christian of them!

Incidentally, cinema attendances are up, last year was the highest level of cinema attendance since 2002 with record takings at the box office.

It would be a shame to loose a local resource forever.
stone-penge
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Post by stone-penge »

I see room for a compromise in this issue.

What about converting the building back into a cinema that shows Mel Gibson's 'The passion of Christ' on a continual loop?
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