Following the successful completion of 17 new homes on the ‘Phase 1’ land to the south of the site, our clients wanted to appoint us to carry out a master planning exercise on the former Alston Nursery site. Our initial brief was to secure outline planning permission for an additional 16 mixed tenure homes, and the outline approval secured permission for the overall number and layout of the buildings, with the detailed design stages to follow once the principle of development was established.
After an outline planning approval was granted, the practice subsequently prepared detailed design proposals for a reserved matters planning application. We worked as part of a larger design team including consulting engineers Awcock Ward and Amalgam Landscape Architects. The scheme includes 14 houses and 2 flats, with a mix of open-market, shared equity and affordable rented units. The two flats provide one-bedroom homes, each with private outdoor space, and the houses are a mix of 2, 3 and 4 bedroom layouts. The scheme includes a 50% on site affordable housing contribution providing a mix of 1, 2 and 3 bedroom affordable homes.
The buildings are oriented around a central spine road, with a turning area and shared parking courtyard at the western end of the site. The public realm within the development is overlooked by building frontages to create a positive street scene with passive surveillance. Corner plots were designed with dual aspect rooms to ensure that all the parking areas were overlooked. A row of buildings also fronts the main road into the village, continuing an established building frontage from the ‘Phase 1’ site to the south. This building line creates an important feature upon entering the village, and parking is provided to the rear of these homes and is accessed from within the development.
The practice has now been retained to produce detailed drawings for Building Regulations approval. The houses will be constructed in a highly insulated, traditional masonry construction but feature prefabricated timber floor and roof elements to speed up the site work and accommodate service runs within the floor zones. It’s always rewarding to be able to stay involved for the site work stages of residential developments, and we enjoy the challenges of working on larger schemes as part of a coordinated design and build team.