Southwark council gives 52-storey skyscraper overlooking Blackfriars Bridge the green light

Architect Ian Simpson’s controversial 52-storey tower near Blackfriars, south London was given the go ahead by Southwark council last night.

The development, for Liverpool-based client the Beetham Organisation, will include a 261-room Jumeirah hotel and 64 luxury apartments. There will also be a public viewing gallery on the top floor and a six storey affordable housing block on an adjacent site.

The tower was reduced in height from 68 stories following objections from Cabe and English Heritage. Both Lambeth and Westminster Councils also opposed the scheme as they said it affected historic views across the river.

The planning approval is significant as it opens up the way for more tall building schemes in that area of London. Developer Land Securities is currently awaiting planning approval for a Wilkinson Eyre scheme that includes two towers – one at 42 storeys and one at 23 on an adjacent site.