Southwark Council's planning committee has backed the construction of a 37-storey residential tower block as part of the regeneration of Elephant & Castle.
Proceeds from the sale of the land for the 284-home St Mary’s site, adjacent to the area’s tube station, will fund the construction of a new £20 million leisure centre in the area.
The block was designed by architect Squire & Partners, and developer Lend Lease is expected to begin construction next summer.
A statement from Rob Deck, Lend Lease’s Elephant & Castle project director, said the council’s decision represented “the most significant milestone to date” in the area’s in the £1.5 billion regeneration
“St Mary’s Residential is also a bold visual marker for the wider regeneration of the area,” he said.
The council said the new leisure centre being created as a result of the development would “dramatically improve” the accessibility of health and sports facilities in the area and was expected to be complete “in the autumn of 2014“.
Council leader Peter John said the area had been crying out for an up-to-date leisure centre and swimming pool for too long.
"Planning consent means that we're ready to take this to the next stage,” he said.
“The centre will provide first-class facilities for local people and will draw others to the area when it completes.
“We’ll soon be able to see the physical signs of the new leisure centre taking shape on the ground - just another sign of the area's exciting and rapid transformation."
A new website for the local community, which explains the council's plans for the regeneration of Old Kent Road, has been launched