Live canal­side in trendy N1C

Evening Standard - West End Final Extra - ES Homes and Property - - New Homes -

AHOME be­side the Thames in cen­tral Lon­don may sound be­yond your bud­get — but put on your walk­ing boots and make for Re­gent’s Canal tow­path, where a fresh wave of hous­ing is un­der way.

The wa­ter­way stretches nine miles from Padding­ton in the west to Lime­house in the east, silently snaking through some of Lon­don’s most fash­ion­able districts. It wasn’t al­ways like this. When opened in 1820, the canal skirted the edges of a then-com­pact city, past noisy fac­to­ries and pol­lut­ing coal heaps.

Now re­de­vel­op­ment of these derelict, for­merly unloved postin­dus­trial sites is once again chang­ing the face of Lon­don. Onyx Apart­ments, right, looms over once-grimy King’s Cross sta­tion, now beau­ti­fied, and also Cam­ley Street Nat­u­ral Park, an un­ex­pected twoacre wildlife refuge wedged be­tween train tracks and the canal.

Once used to store coal trans­ported along the wa­ter­way, this spot was ear­marked as a coach park but sur­vives as a serene space where you can wan­der over­grown path­ways, hear the twit­ter­ing of birds and the rush of wa­ter run­ning through a nearby lock, and watch colour­ful barge boats from the grassy verge.

Homes on the up­per lev­els of the de­vel­op­ment have a ter­rific van­tage point of this ur­ban land­scape, with floor-to-ceil­ing win­dows plus out­door ar­eas. Prices from £910,000. Call Cush­man & Wake­field on 020 3296 2222.

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