The Council has already granted planning permission for the new college complex, but refused the plans to convert the existing site into housing this week. Portfolio holder for Planning, Councillor Marilyn Ashton told the Harrow Observer: "I have some severe reservations about this and I’m not prepared to accept these proposals."
Harrow College’s outline plans had been for between 404 and 420 flats in five blocks up to a maximum of 12 storeys. There was no affordable housing element. The listed White House, part of the site, would be converted into apartments.
The grounds for refusal were "overdevelopment", having an adverse impact. There had been much local opposition to the development, which has clearly been listened to by the Council.
This refusal is a setback to the renovation of Harrow Town Centre, as £5m from the sale of the site was to be given to TfL for improvements to the transport interchange at neighbouring Harrow-on-the-Hill station. The College now has to rethink the financing of the whole project.