Holed: Hackney prestige flats and shops development drills down to a dramatic lift shock

StMatt©DA1121trafficA: © DavidAltheer@gmail.com St Matthias youth clunb Dalston London E8 251121
youthclub©DA19: DalstonYouthClub1219©da: No passage for pedestrians despite legal requirement Lon E8 Sat 130419 © david.altheer@gmail.comDalstonYouthClub1219©da:
No passage: pedestrians had no choice but the road and, main picture at top, the development at time of writing

THE FLATS-RETAIL-OFFICES development was beset with problems. Among them were walls that started to crack, mis-fitting windows, bits that blew away when the wind got strong and the pedestrian-bothering blocking of a busy pavement. 

Even the financing was unorthodox: by crowd-funding, probably a first in the property world, which prefers conventional loans. 

The latest misfortunate to hit this Hackney scheme is a lift shaft. The builders discovered when they set about installing the elevator that it was too big for the basement. Whoops! 

Cue cursing, then frantic chipping and drilling by a specialist urgently hired to widen the shaft. 

And what a noise! Noise was always going to be a problem for anyone moving into one of the flats: the E8 1NH location, corner of the cut-through street Cecilia Road and the busy Dalston Lane, is often loud with traffic jams and horn-hooting drivers.

 As for the basement, it was meant to be ready months ago, for the much-needed return of the local youth club, St Matthias. 

St MATTHIAS YOUTH CLUB squat (4 people) © david.althgeer[ a t] gmail.com
Wham-bam: in May 2017 police force entry to the youth club after squatters occupied it, adding months to the delay on work to rehouse the club
Dalston, once the heart of the hipster universe (you remember hipsters, don’t you?), is known for its many property pluses, among them great public transport and other benefits that make 1 Cecilia Road look like a prestige development. Even the protruding pointy bricks — sorry, maison briques (sic), “brick house” in sort-of French — appeal to some observers. Yet buyers should notch up their bravery meter. 

It can be turned to their advantage. The project’s history means that they can push for sizeable discounts on the flats, advertised at between £500,000 for a one-bedder and £800,000 for a three-bedder. The ground floor with its retail/office spaces is on sale for just over a million.

Some of the crowdfunders individually invested hundreds of thousands of pounds. They will be ruefully recalling the promoter’s claims that the scheme could return an 85% profit.

Certainly rueful are the youth club’s teenagers, unable to enter the below-ground venue promised in 2017. Many of them are now adults, wandering around Hackney at a loose end.

Strenuous efforts to get a comment from the developer, East Eight with London Property, failed.

David Altheer 061221

Backstory: Squatters evicted from Dalston clubDeveloper submits plansBig property deal in DalstonFlats future for controversial Dalston clubHackney developer offers chance of an 85% profit; What the Dalston club taught me

Deep dig: above, work starts on the basement intended for the St Matthias Youth Club

* Pictures © DavidAltheer@gmail.com. All available for sale via that eddress. Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink. Links to articles in The Guardian do not imply approval of the newspaper’s historic involvement with slavery.

Trouble ahead: out with the old St Matthias Youth Club building and in with the property development scheme. It soon started to go wrong
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One thought on “Holed: Hackney prestige flats and shops development drills down to a dramatic lift shock

  1. I have watched on numerous occasions young people trying to climb up those protruding bricks. A free real climb.

    I had not thought of that, even though I happened to walk up to Stokey climbing wall at the weekend. Now where are my crampons? — Editor

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