Upton Park, the historic football ground of West Ham FC will be converted into a residential village, it has emerged.
Housebuilder Barratt Homes is working with developers Galliard Homes to turn the football stadium into homes – and the two firms are currently in discussions with Newham council over the level of affordable housing that must be provided.
Galliard Homes bought the football ground from the Premiership football club. In February, the club's chairman, Baroness Brady, said that the firm won the bid to buy the site because of its local, east London roots. West Ham will be moving to London's Olympic Stadium next season.
A specialist in converting industrial or commercial sites into homes, Galliard currently has around 6,000 residential units under construction and sites in planning with a completed value of around £2 billion.
This is the first major deal done by Barratt, an FTSE 100 firm, since the company's former chief executive, Mark Clare, retired in July. Former finance director, David Thomas, took over the role.
The question of affordable homes
Galliard has previously faced criticism over its initial plans for Upton Park. Its original proposal comprised a village of 838 homes in blocks up to 15 storeys high. However, only 51 of the units – six per cent of the total – were deemed to be "affordable".
Although social housing was not mentioned in the application, the local community wants the development to be a legacy to the football club, including landscaped gardens, a museum and a statue of Bobby Moore.
An analyst told the Telegraph that these requirements were very expensive and likely led to a lack of affordable housing on the early plans.
A spokesman for Barratt Homes said: "Galliard Homes and Barratt London can confirm that they are working together regarding the potential redevelopment of the existing West Ham football ground following the club’s relocation to the former Olympic Stadium in readiness for the 2016-2017 football season."
The deal with Barratt is likely to stir up speculation on whether Galliard could float within the next year, according to the Telegraph.
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