Controversial cube houses will be coming to the streets of Merton after plans were given the green light last night.
The striking Y:Cubes will be cropping up on the junction of Woodstock Way and Clay Avenue in Mitcham for YMCA Wimbledon tenants and people in need of temporary housing.
An artists' impression of the development.
They are 280 sq ft with a bedroom, a joint kitchen and living room, and a bathroom.
Each cube costs £30,000 to build and will be let for £140 a week - 65 per cent lower than the market rate.
Speaking after the decision, Andy Redfearn, YMCA London South West’s director of housing and development, said: “I am very excited and elated it has been approved.
“We are very relieved.”
Andy Redfearn outside the Y:Cube house.
Plans for 36 housing units stacked in a three-storey block will provide an affordable housing solution to YMCA and social housing tenants in Mitcham and the surrounding area, developers claim.
Debate at the Merton Council planning committee meeting last night raised concerns over their original bright blue and red colour, the size of the 280sq ft apartments and the late notice of the application.
The colours have been since been changed to a more subdued lighter brown, slate grey and pale sand, residents were told last night.
Inside the Y:Cube house
A resident of Woodstock Way who spoke at the meeting said: “I would like to say how disappointed I am with the late notice I was given.
“I received a letter yesterday evening.
“I don’t like it – I am concerned about parking, transport and there are the noise levels and the congestion if people do drive.”
Council planning officer Jonathan Lewis said: “The table of notice was less than ideal.”
He added it was not every day a scheme like this is put in front of the council by such well-renowned architects.
The cube housing has been designed by Rogers Stirk Harbour and Partners and is being hailed as an innovative, affordable housing solution which is getting a lot of attention in the industry.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson visited the prototype in Wimbledon earlier this year and gave it the thumbs up.
At the time he said: “I think it’s lovely. I think it’s terrific. The tenant is thrilled with it and that’s the most important thing for me.”
The Y:Cubes will be built on the site of a community centre demolished in 2004.
Last night’s decision will allow the YMCA to apply for funding from the Greater London Authority.