Saunders 1865 | Battersea’s new power surge

Battersea’s new power surge

As an iconic element of London’s skyline since it was completed in 1953, the gradual decline and what appeared to be the imminent demise of Battersea Power Station has long been a source of consternation to the residents of both Battersea and London as a whole. However, as rescue scheme after rescue scheme has gone to the wall, at last ground has been broken on a new £8 billion multiuse regeneration project.

And, don’t worry, the chimneys are staying!

A part of London’s heritage

Designed by architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, Battersea first produced electricity for the capital in 1933 with just two of its four famous chimneys. Amazingly it survived the War unscathed and in 1953 the fourth chimney was completed, resulting in the iconic building we know today. But by 1983 it had stopped producing electricity, and as planners and developers argued over its future, it became steadily more derelict. Ideas came and went; at one point it was going to be a theme park, at another a mega-hotel. The power station itself is now a Grade II listed building and desperately in need of major repairs – this alone has been enough to deter its development.

A new dawn for an old icon

At last a new page has been turned in the Battersea story and it is once again rising on an upward trajectory. A consortium of Malaysian interests acquired the site in 2012 for £400 million and the celebrated architect Rafael Viñoly has designed a 39 acre, £8 billion regeneration of this vast central London site. Understanding the importance of the four chimneys to Londoners, Viñoly’s design is in sympathy with Scott’s 20th century masterpiece and the view of it from the Thames has been protected.

A big plan

The redevelopment of Battersea constitutes the largest ever planning permission granted in central London and so far 800 apartments in Phase 1 of the project have been sold off plan, including a £6 million penthouse, for a total of £600 million. This part of the project does not include the main body of the power station but will provide 100,000 square feet of shops and restaurants, and the apartments come with a residents’ club designed by Lord Linley. Later phases will include a park, hotel, a multilevel shopping street, a conference centre and possibly an entertainment venue. The first residents will be able to move in during 2016 and one of the later phases will also incorporate 500 affordable new homes. Permission has been granted for an extension of the Northern line down to Battersea and Nine Elms, where the new American Embassy is currently under construction. All this development is having a positive effect on Battersea property prices in what agents are coming to call the ‘Battersea bounce.’

If you want to get a glimpse of the work in progress, a new temporary park on the bank of the Thames is hosting part of the Chelsea Fringe Festival, in association with the Chelsea Flower Show.

  • To find out more about living in the area, see our Battersea and Clapham area report or talk to one of our Relocation Advisers on 0800 018 1865.
  • We’ll bring you more news about the Battersea redevelopment as it happens.

For a free initial consultation about your specific situation, contact us by any of the following ways:

UK +44 20 7590 2700

Contact us for a free initial consultation about your specific situation.
UK +44 20 7590 2700
Saunders 1865