A controversial 48-story tower in central London has been denied planning permission because it would cause damage to the Tower of London and Britain’s oldest synagogue.
Plans for 31 Bury Street, developed by BentallGreenOak and designed by architect Stiff + Trevillion, have been rejected by the City of London Corporation councilors. Their decision contradicted the recommendation of their planning officer, who had recommended the approval of the building project in April. At the time, planners said the public benefits of the 197-foot-tall tower would outweigh concerns that it could adversely affect heritage sites like the Tower of London.
The development plan envisaged the demolition of the existing building and the construction of 48 upper floors for office space as well as two basement floors, some of which were retail space and other communal areas. As part of the project, more than 400 parking spaces were to be created in the basement.
Historic England and historic royal palaces opposed the scheme, while officials from Britain’s oldest synagogue, Bevis Marks, which was founded in 1701, said the scheme would affect the religious significance of the religious site and result in a loss of sunlight in the area .
BentallGreenOak Managing Director Alexander Morris said: “We are disappointed with today’s decision by the City of London Planning and Transportation Committee. We will examine the reasons for the decision and then think about our next steps. “
Stiff + Trevillion declined to comment.