Adapt the preliminary external layout to reduce car dominance and make walking and cycling easier and more pleasurable.
This has been done by focusing on the connections that lead to building entrances and make up the ‘green route’ between Alma Road and Vansittart recreation ground.
More generous arrival spaces have been created outside the building entrances to balance building heights and allow for useful street furniture such as seating and cycle stands for visitors.
The busy arrival zone has been calmed by creating a raised table which slows vehicle speeds and creates a shared space with pedestrians. Trees within the entrance area have a clear stem of 2m so avoid being a hazard to visibility. The hard landscape treatment would be used to identify ideal pedestrian crossing areas and lane boundaries.
The green route has been developed as an identifiable path with planting in containers and in the ground, which occasionally widens to allow for activities such as outdoor seating, pre-school play, table tennis, meeting, and eating areas. These could serve both the office and residential users as appropriate offering increased wellbeing and/or productivity.
The creation of a ground-floor car park for the residential block has created the potential for two internal courtyards at the first-floor level, creating light and views for the apartments. The approach for the courtyard is to provide planting which would provide color, screening, and define space. They also offer access to the outdoors and the potential for socializing outdoor dining, and quiet spaces.
The loss of potential habitat from the brownfield site has been mitigated by the provision of a brown roof beneath the
solar panels of the office block. This would provide a low maintenance habitat for insects and nesting birds, as well as a beneficial microclimate for the optimal functioning of the solar PV.