Proposals for Bishopsgate Goods Yard in east London, including 400 homes, have been drawn up by not-for-profit developer the Environment Trust.
Community groups led by the trust are now in talks over the plans with site owner Railtrack, the London mayor’s office and London Underground.

The masterplan has been drawn up as an alternative to Railtrack’s proposals, as part of which LU will demolish some of the site’s historic railway arches to make way for its East London Line extension.

  The trust’s plans, which are being designed in detail by architect HTA, would involve the retention of the arches. It suggests that the Tube extension and 400 homes could be built on top of the railway arches.

However, LU has expressed fears over whether the arches could hold the rail structure – it believes the viaduct may have been permanently weakened by a fire in the 1960s.

John Aldenton, the trust’s development officer, said that the scheme would also use another viaduct adjoining the site. The space between the arches of this viaduct could hold business accommodation for 1800 workers, and its surface of the viaduct would be grassed over as part of a 3.5-acre extension to an adjacent park.

Aldenton said: “The scheme would open the goods yard up to the whole of the community.”