Billions of pounds have been spent on the redevelopment of Wembley Park over the past two decades, including building thousands of new rental homes.

But one councillor has called it another step towards total gentrification of the area.

Leader of Brent Liberal Democrats and representative for Alperton ward in the southern part of Wembley, Cllr Anton Georgiou, said: “The demand for housing in Brent and across London means that there is a need to increase supply by building good quality homes. 

“However, I remain unconvinced that the type of housing currently being built in Wembley Park and elsewhere in the borough is actually meeting local need.”  

Developers Quintain bought the 85-acre land around Wembley Stadium in 2002 with the aim of creating a leading 15-minute neighbourhood.

To date, £2.7billion has been spent developing the site. 

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Alongside Brent Council, the developers have delivered new housing, shops, entertainment, and infrastructure – including new medical and community centres – to the area.

Brent & Kilburn Times: Wembley Park, where a studio or one-bed flat is for rent from £1,770 a monthWembley Park, where a studio or one-bed flat is for rent from £1,770 a month (Image: Quintain)

A spokesperson for Quintain said: “Twenty years ago, when Quintain began the transformation of Wembley Park, the 85-acre estate had just one resident, one restaurant, acres of flat surface car parks and industrial sheds. Economic activity outside event day was minimal. 

“Today, the area has been transformed with new residents, workers, offices, shops, community facilities and restaurants. It’s an everyday, year-round destination and a cultural and economic hub for Brent.”  

The project has also seen the refurbishment of the Grade II listed OVO Arena Wembley and the redevelopment of Olympic Way, as well as the construction of London Designer Outlet, Boxpark Wembley, two hotels, Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre, Union Park – the first new public park in Brent in over 150 years, and more than 5,000 new homes.

A Brent Council spokesperson said: “The Wembley Park development is on track to deliver the biggest ‘build to rent’ site in the UK, with 6,000 homes scheduled to be delivered by 2026. 

“This is a fantastic development for local residents, and people from surrounding neighbourhoods, that distinguishes Brent as a borough of opportunities.”

However, Cllr Georgiou has suggested that £1,600 for a one-bedroom apartment is not affordable for local people. He said: “This latest development is another example of mainly wildly unaffordable, luxury apartments in an area already densely filled with similar units.

“To my mind, it represents another step towards the total gentrification of the Wembley Park area which is almost unrecognisable from the time I was a kid.” 

Quintain’s spokesperson said that they have created more than 5,000 homes for more than 11,500 residents. 

They added: “A third of the homes we are building at Wembley Park are discounted rent, discounted for sale or shared ownership. We are proud of our commitment to local people and making Wembley Park accessible to all.”

The next phase of the project is the development of the northeast of the site. Plans include the building of 2,000 homes, the extension of Union Park to become a seven-acre biodiverse green space, and another community centre.

Brent & Kilburn Times: Wembley Park has transformed in the years since Quintain bought the land in the area in 2002Wembley Park has transformed in the years since Quintain bought the land in the area in 2002 (Image: Jason Hawkes/Quintain)

Currently, there are 750 homes under construction at the site, with an expected completion date of 2025.

Cllr Georgiou said: “There must be a greater effort to drastically increase the supply of genuinely affordable units and council homes for council tenants. After all Brent’s number one focus should be to ensure local people can afford to live in their borough and for the growing housing waiting list to decrease.”

Brent Conservatives were approached for comment but did not respond ahead of publication.