The final three leaseholders on Southwark's Heygate Estate have been issued compulsory purchase orders this week, as part of the £1.5 billion Elephant & Castle regeneration.
Southwark Council said that while almost all of the estate's 1,200 residents had left and some demolition work had already begun, the compulsory purchase Orders (CPOs) were the only way to ensure the redevlopment - being conducted in partnership with Lend Lease - happened to a reasonable timescale.
CPO recipients will have 28 days to object to the orders.
Meanwhile, Southwark said the last of the 10 Heygate re-housing sites away from the estate – Stead Street – had just received planning permission. It will be developed by the Guinness Trust.
Council leader Peter John said the speed of progress with the Elephant & Castle scheme was "remarkable". "The Heygate Estate is at the centre of the ambitious plans for this central location," he said. "I'm delighted that soon local people will see the long-awaited demolition begin, and new homes appear. This will drive up the local economy and create better places for people to live, work and enjoy themselves."
The regeneration programme will see the creation of some 2,400 new homes as well as a large new park. The next phase of demolition is set to begin early next year, while pre-demolition work will begin on the vacant Kingshill, Swanbourne and Wansey Street blocks in the coming months.
Southwark said it was currently seeking interim uses for a number of sites across the estate. A former petrol station on Walworth Road is in line to become a "box park" centre that could temporarily house artists, cultural organisations and small to medium-sized businesses.
The council has agreed to provide Crossways Church with a brand new building on a site at the heart of Elephant and Castle, subject to planning approvals.
Lend Lease's application for the whole development will be heard at an independent planning committee by the end of the year.
It has become Southwark council leader Peter John's mantra: "This is the best borough, in the best city, in the best country in the…