‘Plagued by dust and noise’: Council agrees £30m deal with HS2 to compensate residents whose homes are ‘virtually uninhabitable’

HS2 construction work at Euston. Photograph: RPM / Flickr / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Rail company HS2 and Camden Council have a agreed a deal worth up to £29.5m to rehouse and compensate residents whose homes near the route have become “virtually uninhabitable”.

The deal will see money used to move families from Cartmel, Coniston and Langdale blocks on the Regent’s Park estate, who have been putting up with construction work at the HS2 Euston station and high speed rail line.

“Construction activity next to the north of Regent’s Park Estate is more significant and impactful than in any other location along the Phase 1 HS2 route and some residents are already living within metres of the HS2 construction,” a Town Hall report said.

Three housing blocks near the route were knocked down and residents complained about noise and dust and were worried about vibration from the work and rodents.

Tunnels and tracks are being built next to the estate.

The money will be used by the council to move residents away from their homes in Coniston, Cartmel and Langdale because conditions have become unbearable.

A consultation won the backing of 70 per cent of residents.

The Town Hall report added: “The council is very concerned about the impact that HS2 construction work will have on the long-term life chances and wellbeing of residents living in Regent’s Park Estate and within these particular blocks because of their very close proximity to the works.”

Cabinet member for new homes, jobs and community investment, Danny Beales, said: “The proximity of their homes to HS2 construction has left them living in unacceptable conditions, plagued by dust, noise, and daily disruption.”

He said the deal with HS2 “compensates every tenant – including those who have already moved – and provides a lifeline move for our leaseholders, who have struggled to sell their flats”.

The council set up a voluntary rehousing scheme for 103 households and gave them priority to move into nearby empty flats.

So far, 93 tenants have applied to move and 77 families have already been rehoused.

Last year, residents told a council meeting how HS2 construction work has affected them.

Resident and support worker Nasrine Djemai said: “HS2 has reshuffled my community. Impacts include dust and noise and increased anti-social behaviour.”

The agreement with HS2 has to be agreed by Cabinet later this week.

Camden Council can ask for money for disturbance, rent, service charge, security and repairs to homes.

Politicians will also look at the future of the blocks which are likely to be empty for a decade while HS2 construction work continues.

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