Belsize Park, Camden, London

We were appointed by a developer client as landscape architects for this residential development located in Belsize Park, North London. Our scope of works was to develop a sketch landscape design for client approval, prepare landscape architect ‘s information to discharge landscape related Conditions, then to prepare of a full tender package of landscape architect ‘s information to enable the construction of the external work.

The proposed buildings are replacing four existing houses in a terrace located within a Conservation area. Basement parking is located under the proposed dwellings and under the proposed gardens. As a consequence the rear gardens to this residential development are located on a structural slab, effectively roof gardens. Within the envelope of the rear gardens a significant step in the structural slab needed to be accommodated within the landscape design.

Our landscape architect’s brief for the rear gardens was to maximise the usable space, provide an attractive housing for mechanical plant associated with the individual dwellings and to provide the end user with a high quality pleasant and flexible space. Our landscape architects worked hard to provide a landscape design which would accommodate sufficient depths of topsoil in critical locations so large localised specimen planting could be accommodated.

The front gardens needed to provide a suitable means of pedestrian access to the dwellings from the street, whilst providing adequate space and access to the enclosed bin stores. The planting and paving specified in this location needed to be of a suitable high quality for an area of this extraordinary architectural quality.

Finally, we needed to resolve vehicular access requirements to the basement car park at the rear of these dwellings. This zone needed to accommodate the access requirements of the residents cars, the service vehicles and the occasional pedestrian access to two of the four rear gardens.

Hotel Neptune, Malá Morávka, Czech Republic

Our landscape architects were approached by an hotel owner client in the Czech Republic. Our landscape architect ‘s brief was to provide our client with concept ideas and to provide them with a strategic landscape design. They required suggestions on how they could develop land within the ownership of the hotel with a view to providing all year round facilities for visitors to their hotel. In addition, they required suggestion for the adjacent plot of land as they were considering extending the existing hotel grounds. The extensive grounds of the hotel, which includes a mountain hillside and woodland, is currently only being used during the winter months as a nursery ski slope. On the north boundary of the site a public footpath exists. This connects to an extensive network of walking a cycling routes.

Our client did not have any preconceptions or ideas on how the site should be developed, our brief was to ensure that all year round facilities were provided. Our landscape architects therefore met with our client to discuss possibilities for the site. Through discussion a clear design brief became apparent and was defined.

The main emphasis of the project was to identify and develop the existing attributes contained on this sloping site. We developed potential design strategies which would diversify the potential land use and visitor facilities. Another opportunity for this site which became clear during discussions was this it was only being used during the winter months. We therefore made suggestions on how it could be used through out the year and incorporate the potential for long and short stay holidays. The final output for this project was a strategic landscape design and an ideas report to maximise the potential of Hotel Neptune.

It is anticipated that our landscape architect ‘s masterplan will be developed and implemented in a number phases over the coming years.

Greyhound Stadium, Blackbird Leys, Oxford

We were appointed as landscape architects by a developer client on this low density, 220 unit, 3.5ha proposed residential development located at the edge of an urban centre. We were tasked to develop a landscape design to the satisfaction of the client and all other reliant parties. Once our sketch design was frozen we proceeded with the production of landscape architect ‘s information to support a detailed Planning application. This package of information included drawn information and a landscape architect ‘s design statement.

The proposed built form was of a low density and was arranged to create a variety of spaces. To the north boundary of the site three mews type courtyards were proposed. The landscape design principals for these areas was that of the “Home Zone’. At the heart of the site three connected, distinct public open spaces were proposed. The layout of the site generally adopted the principals of the ‘Shared Surfaces’. Carriageways and footways were designed in such away so as to encourage vehicular traffic to move slowly and to give the pedestrian priority.

Our landscape design incorporated two small parks, one pocket park and one paved pedestrian square. At three separate locations children’s playgrounds were proposed. These playgrounds were composed of both natural and structured play elements.

Across the site the principals Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS)  were generally adopted. This dealt with the surface water drainage, allowing in ground infiltration. In a number of locations swales were introduced into the park to deal with some of the surface water run. In addition, permeable paved surfaces are proposed widely across the site.

To the perimeter of the site there were numerous existing trees and hedges. Our landscape design proposals were carefully considered so as to minimise the impact on these existing valuable assets. Our intervention from the beginning of the design process was to retain as may of these trees and hedges as possible.

Star Lane, Great Wakering, Essex

We were appointed as landscape architects by a developer client for this proposed 114 unit, 3.2ha residential development located at the edge Green Belt. We initially prepared a landscape design masterplan for discussion and the approval of our client and the design team. Once the general principals of our landscape design were agreed we proceeded with the production of landscape architect ‘s information to support a detailed Planning submission. Our information consisted of a landscape masterplan drawing and a landscape design statement which described our landscape proposals in detail.

The proposed built form for this residential development is of a low density, with each residential unit having access to a private rear garden. The landscape design for the majority of the public realm within the site adopts the principals of ‘Home Zone’, with carriageway and footway being on the same level. This design principal encourages vehicular traffic to move slowly and to give the pedestrian priority. In addition, the slower traffic speeds will also enable and encourage safe doorstep play.

Three community pocket parks are accommodated within our landscape architect ‘s site wide masterplan. Two of the parks have dedicated play areas integrated into their landscape design. The play equipment contained within the parks are in the form of both informal and formal items. The suitability of the play equipment catered for a range of ages.

Generally, each residential unit frontage accommodates one parking space, pedestrian access to the property and boundary planting. The intention being to provide each property with a zone of defensible space. In addition to the dedicated parking, there are other small blocks of unallocated parking throughout the site.

As this site directly abuts Green Belt land the Local Authority was particularly sensitive about the existing trees on and abutting the site boundary. Therefore, the root protection areas of trees to be retained around this site were carefully considered by our landscape architects so as to minimise the potential impact of this development on their health.

Grange Road, Walthamstow, Waltham Forest, London

We were appointed by a developer client as landscape architects on this 0.4ha proposed residential development located on a plot adjacent to a busy railway line in east London. Our scope was to develop a sketch landscape design to the satisfaction of the client and the design team. Once signed off we then tasked produced a detailed landscape design statement, with supporting landscape architect ‘s drawings, to support a detailed planning application.

The existing plot was triangular in shape, relatively flat, with an elevated railway line along one of its long edges to its north west. The embankment to the railway line contained a significant number of trees which were to be retained. To the south of the plot, along the other long boundary, existing rear gardens were located.

Our landscape architects designed the public realm to this development as a ‘Home Zone’ type space and the principles of shared surface were adopted. It was anticipated that pedestrians and vehicles would share the same space as no formal footway or carriageway were proposed. Our landscape architects considered approach suitable for this environment as the volume of traffic entering this site would be low, traffic speeds would be slow and sight lines were designed to be clear. It was intended the external environment to this site would provide opportunities for children to play.

Planting adjacent to the building edge provide some defensible space for the inhabitants of the units. These planters jut out into the shared space, providing residents with a clearly defined pedestrian zone before they enter the main space.

Generally the strategy adopted for the drainage of this site adopts Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems principles. Permeable block pavers were proposed in a number of locations and excess rain would be accommodated within a number of the planted areas.

Within the root protection areas of the existing trees to the north west boundary no dig construction principles were adopted and permeable block pavers were proposed. This will help to ensure the survival of these retained trees.

Liverpool Grove, Walworth, Southwark, London

We offered our professional landscape architect ‘s services to the Walworth Society and were tasked with reviewing the current use of Liverpool Grove, located off the Walworth Road. Our initial landscape architect ‘s task was to analyse whether Liverpool Grove would be a suitable road to adopt the principals of ‘Shared Space’. Our analysis concluded it was and our landscape architects therefore developed a landscape design to suit this end.

The Walworth Road runs north/ south at the west end of Liverpool Grove. At the east end St Peter’s Church is located, this is a Grade 1 listed building. The existing street has a wide building to building frontage providing an attractive vista of the church when viewed from the Walworth Road. As the existing street does not allow through traffic to motor vehicles we concluded it to be suitable for a ‘Shared Space’ due to the very low volumes of slow moving traffic. This road is currently a cycle thoroughfare and this constraint needed to be accommodated within our final landscape design.

It was possible to introduce trees into our landscape design whilst retaining the attractive vista of the church due to the wide building to building frontage. The exiting parking layout could be rearranged to accommodate all the existing parking numbers on one side of the street. Finally, the introduction of seating, cycle storage and the laying of a new paved surface from building frontage to building frontage could all combine to transform this space from a residential road to linear square. This reconfigured landscape design would provide a suitable setting for the Grade 1 listed St Peter’s Church and provide a high quality space in which local residents could relax.

Our landscape architects made a presentation of our landscape design for Liverpool Grove to the Walworth Society and other interested parties. This generated much discussion and enthusiasm to drive this project forward.