Merton Council’s clampdown on basement extensions has done little to deter subterranean ambitions in the leafiest streets of Merton.
Homeowners of 67 Murray Road, Wimbledon Village, have submitted a planning application for a luxurious basement complete with wine cellar for 1,000 bottles, "media room" and "library/music/Chinese" room.
Covering the whole ground floor plan, designs also include an underground gym, sauna, covered terrace and ensuite bedroom.
Neighbours have raised concerns about disruption to water tables following similarly grandiose basement enlargements at 44, 66 and 72 Murray Road.
In a letter to the planning committee, Mr and Mrs Copeland, of 4 Murray Road, said: "It is known that many of the houses in Murray suffer from serious flooding in their cellars.
"We fear a large underground extension as proposed here would affect the local water table adversely and may cause serious damp problems for the adjacent houses and indeed further down the street.
"67 Murray Road is a large house with a large garden - why can’t the proposed building work be above ground in their garden?"
Green Structural Engineers Ltd, who were hired by property owners to conduct a drainage survey, have concluded the basement is "expected to have a relatively limited effect on the hydrological flows below this site and the adjacent properties."
Their assessment is in line with the council’s tighter rules on basement excavations, to be formally introduced at the next full council meeting on June 4, which require developers to include a basement impact survey and construction method statement in their application.
67 Murray Road is a detached two-storey family house with a loft conversion built in the arts and crafts style and dates back to 1908.
An extension to the ground floor level and re-configuration of the loft floor have also been proposed.
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