Tottenham are still waiting for a decision from Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, fifteen months after the inquiry into Haringey Council's Compulsory Purchase Order for the purchase of the remaining land needed for building work to begin, according to The Independent.
Daniel Levy first unveiled plans for a new stadium in 2008, and unveiled a design from KSS Design Group and Buro Happold. A brief flirtation with the Olympic Stadium in Stratford, seen by many as a means of forcing London Mayor Boris Johnson's hand in negotiations over S106 contributions (for affordable housing, infastructure, etc), delayed the process, but with almost all the land purchased Spurs had one final obstacle to overcome.
Overcoming the obstacles
Archway Steel are the last company sat on the land Tottenham need. All other companies and organisations have accepted relocation offers from the club. Rumours have the club offering £3million for the land Archway have, plus a new, expanded site, on White Hart Lane (the road, not stadium), with Archway reportedly looking for upwards of £20million in a part of London that is in urgent need of regeneration.
The steel company are not only blocking the football club's move, but also the council's plans to regenerate North Tottenham, an area crying out for investment and change.
Local MP David Lammy raised a question to planning minister Nick Boles why Spurs were waiting fourteen months, when they had been told a decision would be made in three, and also suggested in Pickles' allegiances might be a factor.
"You have made much in the House of accelerating development on brownfield land and (Mr Pickles) has said a lot about speeding up planning," he said.
"Can you say why the development for Spurs, which is currently with the department on CPO, has been with the department for 14 months, might you reach a decision shortly and can you confirm (Mr Pickles) is in fact not an Arsenal supporter?"
Boles replied: "I would never dare tread into the question of people's football loyalties, particularly not at this time.
"I do understand your frustrations on this. It hasn't entirely always been with the department because we have had to refer back to parties on some very complex questions.
"I am keen to make a decision as soon as possible but I know you will want that decision to be a decision that holds up in court and therefore it is important to make sure it's robust."
Spurs staring down the barrel of long wait?
With Archway also having the option of appealing any decision on the CPO, Levy and Spurs may have an even longer wait on their hands. It is no doubt frustrating for the fans, with White Hart Lane's 36,284 capacity often full and the waiting list for a season ticket standing at over 46,000.
The loss of potential revenue will also not help the club's mood as they compete for Champions League football, and the fans are increasingly vitriolic to the business they see are standing in their club's way simply to line their own pockets.
The sooner a resolution comes the better for all parties concerned it would seem, but until the Government make their decision the future of Tottenham Hotspur and Tottenham the area remains up in the air.
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