Gloucester URC Framework
Gloucester was the first ‘Heritage’ URC and Geraint Hughes led the preparation of the ten year framework for growth. Andy Ward was the lead designer, Hans van Bommel advised on landscape and public realm and Tom Smith was the project manager.
Our Framework provided for cultural and leisure development at Blackfriars, office, residential and community uses in Greyfriars, and retail, leisure and education in the Docks. It also provided a retail masterplan for enhancement of Kings Square. The Framework also focused on the quality of the public realm, creating an integrated network of streets and spaces which connect nationally important heritage destinations and stimulated development.
The URC noted the importance of “Coherent yet flexible regeneration strategies (which) increased appreciation of the city’s heritage (and created) an ethos of quality”. Despite the recession, it has already generated over £600m of investment and more than 1,000 new jobs.
Close cooperation with English Heritage demonstrated the significant heritage benefits of new development in the historic city centre. The Framework provided clear Vision and design guidance but was flexible enough to accommodate innovative architectural proposals, eg in Blackfriars Language Immersion Centre.