HCA Design Review

NEW Masterplanning undertakes regular design reviews on behalf of the Homes & Communities Agency. This includes nationally important regeneration projects such as Heart of Slough, Bath Western Riverside and Gloucester City Centre where we addressed design and delivery problems associated with existing proposals to help secure on-going support from the HCA.

For Heart of Slough, Andy Ward and Geraint Hughes were commissioned by HCA (as funder and landowner) to review the proposals by Development Securities and Berkeley Homes for the redevelopment of central Slough and the ‘infamous’ roundabout on the A4. Our review highlighted serious concerns regarding design quality and deliverability. We were then asked to prepare an alternative masterplan and to work with the developer team to prepare a planning application. Our scheme removed the roundabout and underpass, reduced the scale of the road, introduced at grade crossings for pedestrians and created an ‘address street’ for Slough. Planning permission was granted and a new bus station has already been delivered.

At Bath Western Riverside our review highlighted different ways in which costs could be reduced and the viability of the scheme enhanced. It also showed how the scheme could be made more consistent with HCA’s urban design principles. Our amended masterplan was supported by HCA, Crest Nicholson and Bath & North East Somerset Council. A planning application was submitted for over 2,000 homes and planning permission granted in late 2010. After being derelict for more than 25 years Bath Western Riverside is now delivering a high quality urban housing scheme for the city.