A vehicle for change?

Ten cranes tower over a construction site in Tottenham. But Haringey’s £2bn regeneration hasn’t started yet. For some residents, Tottenham Hotspur’s half-built new stadium casts a shadow over Northumberland Park Estate almost as long as the shadow of the estate’s proposed demolition.

Northumberland Park is one of the estates that is earmarked for demolition under the Haringey Development Vehicle (HDV), dependent on the outcome of public consultation. The vehicle is a 50:50 partnership between the council and developer Lendlease. Northumberland Park Estate’s fate depends on a public consultation. However, Moriam Islam-Begum, a Northumberland Park resident, feels the decision has already been made. “All this is going to be destroyed. The community is going to be broken up. God knows where they’re going to put people. Nobody has a clue. We’ve been told nothing.”

There has been acrimony over Haringey Council’s £2bn partnership with developer Lendlease, but what does it mean for the future of Haringey’s housing stock? And has the council taken on too much risk or does this mark a new era for public-private partnerships as budgets grow more constrained?

Shared powers

One of the main concerns from local MPs and residents is what they see as a lack of transparency from the council. “This is the most controversial and contentious political issue that I have seen in Tottenham since I was first elected to parliament 17 years ago,” says local MP David Lammy. “The council has failed to take the community with it, and I suspect that the courts will have their say in due course.”

The HDV – if it is established – will be a private company, half-owned by Haringey Council, half-owned by private developer Lendlease, and controlled by a board split between representatives from both organisations. Haringey intends to transfer more than half its commercial portfolio into the HDV and hand exclusive construction rights to Lendlease on 60% of the land, along with the responsibility for managing the vehicle.

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