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Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Stratford City bust-up
Amazingly, London and Continental Railways have decided enough is enough, and sacked the developers for Stratford City. After the catfight that's been going on for the last few months, complete with takeover rumours, shoot-out auctions, Ken's dodgy ayatollah comments, and all the other stuff that makes this whole affair the greatest property soap opera running, it came through on my newsfeeds yesterday that they've served notice and are actively looking for a new developer.

It's all here on Planning, but I thought y'all might want to read it without going through the annoying subscribers-only site, so I've cut-and-pasted the best bits:

Landowner London & Continental Railways (LCR) has begun legal proceedings to terminate its contract with the developers on the Stratford City scheme. The consortium Stratford City Developments Limited is owned by developers Stanhope, Westfield, Multiplex and Aldersgate.

LCR's decision came after the failure last week of a 'shoot out' auction, where one of the companies had been expected to buy out the other parties. Stephen Jordan, managing director for property at LCR said: "LCR has taken all reasonable steps to try and ensure that SCDL has been afforded every opportunity to resolve its internal issues." He said the decision did not jeopardise the provision of Olympic facilities on Stratford City land.

The "remediable" notice letter served on the developers allows for a 42-day period in which they could suggest a solution. However a spokesman for LCR said there was little prospect of such an outcome, and that the company was already searching for a replacement developer. LCR said the notice letter allowed them to take control of the consultants working on Stratford City.

The spokesman said the scheme remained on course to begin next year, even though the developers may decide to mount a legal challenge to the notice. A revision to the planning application for zone one of the project, including an increase in housing levels, will be submitted to Newham Council next week. An Olympic Delivery Authority spokesperson: "We have been undertaking contingency planning in recent weeks in case the differences within the Stratford Consortium do not resolve themselves."

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