O2 arena, Greenwich: One Peninsula Square building could tower over landmark

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While the height of the O2 arena structure is about 50m, the new tower block would be nearly 115m tall.

Plans for a 36-storey tower block beside the O2 arena have been sent to Greenwich Council.

The building, One Peninsula Square, would be located between the iconic events venue and North Greenwich Tube station.

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Plans for the project, sent by real estate firm Crosstree, were initially unveiled in November before being sent to the local authority this week.

The building would reportedly include 820 student rooms, 35% of which would be “affordable”. The space will have room for shops on the ground floor, communal gardens and shared spaces such as a study room and bar.

Planning documents from Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands, on behalf of Crosstree, said: “The ground floor of the podium building will provide retail space that brings activity and animation onto the existing public space. This is kept as a continuous frontage on either side of the student residential entrance lobby to maximise the potential use.”

Crosstree was reportedly bought the site from previous developer AEG, the O2’s operator, when it decided not to pursue the project.

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Greenwich Council has previously approved plans for an eight-storey office block to be built on the site in 2010, but plans never progressed after their “viability” proved “lower than expected”.

Another application for a tower block with 395 flats was sent in 2015, but was subsequently withdrawn.

Artists’ impressions of the 36-storey building which could be built by the O2 Arena in Greenwich. (Pictures by Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands / Crosstree)Artists’ impressions of the 36-storey building which could be built by the O2 Arena in Greenwich. (Pictures by Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands / Crosstree)
Artists’ impressions of the 36-storey building which could be built by the O2 Arena in Greenwich. (Pictures by Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands / Crosstree) | Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands / Crosstree

The current plans state that the number of UK full-time students is expected to rise by 25% by 2030, with nearly half of the growth accounted for by international students.

Crosstree said the new building would offer an “exceptional opportunity for students to live in a vibrant and well-connected part of London”.

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It said: “Greenwich Peninsula is currently undergoing a period of rapid growth, with a variety of new developments and communities across the peninsula, of which this project forms a key component.

“The site is located in a key strategic location with the O2 arena to the north, North Greenwich station to the west and the new design district to the south.”

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