Rangers say public supports Old Oak plans
QPR say thousands of local people have backed their plans to regenerate Old Oak.
The club’s Malaysian owners, fronted by chairman Tony Fernandes, have long been keen to develop the area between Scrubs Lane and Willesden Junction, which would be known as New Queens Park and include a new home for Rangers as part of a sporting and leisure complex.
In September the club held a consultation which involved a six-day public exhibition, meetings with local groups, 50,000 newsletters being distributed and a project website being set up.
Rangers say there were almost 3,000 responses and that 2,524 (89%) of people agree with their vision for Old Oak, while only 302 (11%) said they disagreed.
QPR also report that 2,484 (88%) supported Old Oak as the location for a new stadium and 332 (12%) said they disagree with the idea.
“We want to thank everyone who responded to our consultation and shared their thoughts with us,” said Fernandes.
“This is only the first stage of consultation and we will continue to work with the community as we develop our plans in more detail.
“QPR have been in the area for over 100 years and have a loyal fan base.
“We need to move on from Loftus Road if we are to sustain a top-flight football club and Old Oak Common is the only realistic place for us to move – close to our fans and our roots, with great transport links, and the opportunity to be at the heart of the most exciting new development in west London for years.
“Old Oak is the biggest regeneration since the Olympics and we have a responsibility to future generations to get it right.
“We need a comprehensive planned approach with a stadium as its beating heart, led by a football club with a stronger interest in the local community than any other kind of business.
“The choice at Old Oak is between a stadium-led regeneration, generating activity, passion and publicity in a new district with a beating heat, or a dormitory town of buy-to-let flats, driven by housing developers leaving little for the local community.”
QPR say they will now be working with the three relevant London boroughs – Hammersmith & Fulham, Ealing and Brent – as well as the Greater London Authority and local groups to ensure the community will benefit from the club’s proposals.
Fernandes added: “It is important we don’t let this opportunity go to waste.
“Local people have told us that they want QPR to stay in Hammersmith & Fulham. We hope the local boroughs and GLA will support us.
“Let’s work together to deliver a thriving new city quarter that keeps QPR in west London and delivers real community benefits to the wider area.”
Cargiant, who currently own 47 acres of the land, say they are pressing ahead with plans to submit an alternative regeneration proposal, which it claims will be “firm and compelling”.
The company, which is owned by multi-millionaire Geoff Warren, intends to submit a planning application by next autumn.
QPR are currently on course to submit an application in April.
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