Looking Back On 2017
We have been privileged to work on some very exciting and rewarding projects in 2017.
Thank you to everyone who worked with us and supported us throughout the year.
We have been privileged to work on some very exciting and rewarding projects in 2017.
Thank you to everyone who worked with us and supported us throughout the year.
It’s been another busy year for GSA with our portfolio of diverse projects continuing to grow. This includes South Oxhey where we received unanimous planning approval for Phase 2 of our Masterplan (comprising 500+ homes, 50k+ sqft retail, along with the new Market Place and Station Square).
Construction is progressing rapidly - so it won’t be too long before everyone can enjoy a cup of mulled wine at the real Christmas Market!
The design team braved the winter weather to visit Beaulieu Square, being built by Kier contractors just outside Chelmsford. The mixed-use Neighbourhood Centre containing shops, apartments, a nursery & community centre provides the communal facilities for the 200 new homes at Beaulieu Chase for Countryside and L&Q.
Our taxi driver from Chelmsford station has already used the new Sainsbury’s Local store, and we all sampled the delights of the Churchills Fish & Chip shop for a well-earned hot lunch. The first residents will be moving in to their new contemporary apartments early next year - all with generous balconies overlooking the parkland.
Ruth Stanesby and Hannah Shopland joined the CALA team to explain the scheme for 215 new homes, ranging from 1 & 2 bed flats up to 5 bed detached homes, at the Mindenhurst public exhibition. This is the first phase of the redevelopment of the Princess Royal Barracks in Deepcut.
This is part of a wider plan to deliver 1,200 new homes, a school & village centre. The new homes will sit within a beautiful woodland setting, with many enjoying views across the Village Green or parkland. Retention of many mature trees with additional high quality planting sets a high benchmark!
RNIB Redhill was shortlisted for the Health Future Projects Category of the World Architecture Festival Awards. Director Manoher Matharu presented the scheme in Berlin 15-17 Nov. It is a really uplifting story - RNIB in partnership with Countryside are creating a truly inclusive & pioneering residential environment.
The scheme will deliver housing for people with visual impairments side by side with open market sale homes. All homes are linked by the sensory trail to The Hub where the RNIB staff are based. This allows RNIB clients varying degrees of independence and a chance to fully participate in the community.
We built a great relationship working with the residents, Optima, and Crest Nicholson at Park Central. We worked together to regenerate the Lee Bank Estate in Birmingham over a period of roughly 15 years.
It was a very positive design and development process – leaving all parties feeling very proud of what had been achieved through partnership and collaboration together. The most recent accolade is Finalist for Best Community Initiative in the Housebuilder Awards.
Associate John Pratley took part in a very informative 2-day study tour in the Netherlands looking at the innovative Dutch Energiesprong zero-energy, housing retrofit approach.
GSA are currently looking at a number of potential Energiesprong pilots for UK Housing Associations with our Wilmcote House Passivhaus Retrofit clients Keepmoat Regeneration, part of the ENGIE energy and services group.
We had an inspiring WISH (Women in Social Housing) London RegionBreakfast Briefing at our offices this week. The topic was Effective Utilisation of Social Media presented by Paul Monteath, Director at the Digital Co.
Paul specialises in digital strategy, where he has delivered a number of pioneering integrated campaigns. He was able to inspire us to tell our stories...interestingly!
Thanks to MBU and Ashe Construction for inviting us to the topping out ceremony at Park Place, Stevenage. The final steel was successfully craned into place. Now work on the external envelope can start.
The practice of "topping out" a new building can be traced to the ancient Scandinavian religious rite of placing a tree atop a new building to appease the tree-dwelling spirits displaced in its construction. Fortunately this is a town centre regeneration project!
South Oxhey is no longer the Unsung Town – as it was named when it appeared in the BBC series The Choir. The process to revitalize the town centre is well under way – the first housing sites are nearing completion and the new shops and public square at Carpenders Park Station are progressing on site – whilst maintaining public access at all times.
The planning application for the second phase has just been granted planning permission. This gives the green light for 174 mixed tenure homes, shops and a new market place.
We are delighted to see that our work at The Briars (BAC), Harlow, now called Atelier, is coming to fruition. This week the first Home Group tenants moved in. We wish them a very happy future in their new homes.
Working with Harlow Council, Countryside & Home Group we designed a low rise scheme based on a traditional network of street and squares. Consultation with the community told us that this was what was wanted. The challenge was to design an attractive high density scheme at low rise. This was the first of Harlow's priority estates to reach viability
We are delighted to have been selected by CALA Homes to design the first phase of the redevelopment of the Princess Royal Barracks in Deepcut – now known as Mindenhurst. This first phase contains 215 new homes, ranging from 1 & 2 bed flats up to 5 bed detached homes. This is part of a wider plan to deliver 1200 new homes, school & village centre.
A reserved matters planning application will be submitted imminently, with construction potentially starting early in 2018. The new homes will sit within a beautiful woodland setting, with many enjoying views across the Village Green or parkland. Retention of many mature trees with additional high quality planting sets a high benchmark!
We have joined an impressive list of companies and organisations that have signed up to the Future of London Diversity Pledge.
“London’s diversity is its biggest asset”, according to the GLA, offering a competitive edge internationally and among industry peers. New voices can also bring fresh ideas and perspectives - just what is needed now!
The first residents at Hayling Place have moved into their new homes. These family homes neatly infill the vacant site of the former Jet Pub.
This site is the is the first part of the wider South Oxhey town centre regeneration in partnership with Three Rivers District Council, Countryside and Home Group.
John Pratley and Alex Baines will be talking about Wilmcote House, Portsmouth at The International Refurbishment Symposium at The IET, London on Friday 15 September.
They will be explaining the design process and delivery on site of this large scale Passivhaus retrofit project.
Our scheme for 79 new homes in Parcel U2 of Arborfield Green has received unanimous approval at planning committee. This is part of the wider regeneration scheme to transform the former Arborfield Garrison near Wokingham into a garden village.
Many homes will enjoy views over the Lake, and the retention of mature trees, with additional planting adds to the attractive landscaped setting. The design reconciles complex constraints, including flood protection, SuDS (Sustainable Urban Drainage System), an existing sewer, mature protected trees (TPO), and the location of the new bus route.
We are delighted to be appointed by Crest Nicholson on the district centre at Arborfield Green near Wokingham. This is part of an overall masterplan to redevelop this former garrison into a garden village.
It is anticipated that the new district centre will contain a mixture of town centre uses including an Early Years Centre or nursery, community centre, health centre, apartments, office / employment space and retail space including a food store.
We have just completed the architectural design of Phase 2 of the town centre regeneration at South Oxhey (phase 1, including the Station Square is currently on site). This will deliver 174 new homes across a mixture of tenures and 730sqm / 7,850sqft of retail space facing onto a new Market Square (designed by Philip Cave).
The masterplan relocates the existing market place closer to local transport links and Carpenders Park Station, which should help to revitalize the market by encouraging more footfall, and making it sustainable in the long term. The space is also a gathering space that will be used for the annual summer fair and Christmas event.
Great to see the first houses at Arborfield Green completed. They set the bar high for the further 2,000 homes that will transform this former garrison site into an attractive garden village centred around lakes and mature trees.
The design promotes wellbeing, with many homes enjoying views over naturalistic parkland – providing a rich habitat for humans and wildlife alike!
Here is a preview of the new entrance to Beaulieu urban extension in Chelmsford, it is now peeping over the hoarding. It will create an attractive entrance into the new masterplan, as well as catering for the needs of the local community. This block contains spacious duplex apartments above a row of new shops and a food store.
We will keep you updated as the mixed-use buildings in the neighbourhood centre reach completion.
Phase 3 of Arisdale Avenue, South Ockendon (on the Former Ford Works), has just got planning permission. This includes 113 new homes (a roughly equal mix of houses and apartments) arranged around a new central park and play area. A wide range of house types and apartment blocks creates a diverse and sustainable neighbourhood, providing choice.
The design work was developed in a very short 8 week programme. Our team were able to provide the intense effort and focus needed to make this project a success. So much so - the entire application was determined in 5 weeks!
At South Oxhey, town centre regeneration project, there is a process in place to engage with the community. There is a Community Board, regular updates can be found in the newsletter and on the project website. At the weekend the public exhibition to update everyone on progress was attended by over 150 people.
Even the hoarding has been designed to give the public viewing areas so that the progress can be seen - it makes a real difference. On the central site, the structure for the first residential apartment buildings are going in at the moment, and work is just starting on the new Station Square.
A planning application for 79 new homes in Parcel U2 of Arborfield Green has been submitted. This is part of the wider regeneration of Arborfield Garrison. Many homes will enjoy views over the Lake, and the retention of mature trees, with additional planting adds to the attractive landscaped Garden Village setting that new residents will enjoy.
The design reconciles complex constraints, including flood protection, SuDS (Sustainable Urban Drainage System), an existing sewer, mature protected trees (TPO), and the location of the new bus route for residents.
The Community Centre at Beaulieu will be a thriving multi-purpose resource providing a wide range of services, activities and meeting spaces for people of all ages. The building has been designed to be flexible to support all these uses.
The Community Centre forms part of the wider Beaulieu Square neighbourhood centre – which is currently under construction on site. We are delighted to see it all taking shape. Not long to wait!
Our award-winning estate regeneration project at Park Central, Birmingham is nearing completion on site. The Sales Suite is being converted back to an apartment.
So we were really delighted when Crest Nicholson gave us the model. It now has pride of place in our conference room. Please click the link below to see photos of the finished buildings.
We have just submitted a planning application for Phase 3 of Arisdale Avenue – the masterplan to redevelop the Former Ford Works at South Ockendon. This includes 113 new homes (a roughly equal mix of houses and apartments) arranged around a new central park and play area. The new masterplan provides better pedestrian and vehicular connections.
A wide range of dwelling types will create a diverse and sustainable neighbourhood, as well as an attractive, varied streetscape. The parkside homes have generous full height windows and bay windows – making the most of views. The colour palette references the original colours of the Ford Escort Mexico that was built at the site.
Our scheme to transform Park Place, Stevenage has commenced on site, with completion due in late 2018. Carefully considered adaptive re-use and extension of the existing buildings, will provide 202 town centre homes and over 20,000 square feet of retail space; helping to revitalise the town centre and acting as a catalyst for wider regeneration.
The design honours the rational structural grid of existing buildings and re-utilises existing stair cores, maintaining an honesty and connection to the modernist legacy of Stevenage, but with new life and vitality. Totally refurbished and extended retail units at ground floor address a high quality landscaped central parade.
The team are celebrating a successful launch for the first phase of Atelier in Harlow. This is an estate regeneration scheme working in partnership with Harlow Council, Countryside and Home Group. It replaces run down prefab bungalows with contemporary houses and apartments.
It is part of the council's Priority Estates programme - the first to achieve viability and be built. A great milestone for the future of the town!
GSA is rare: we have delivered masterplans as fully functioning built environments. We are able to combine understanding of the place with a design ideology. We create design visions that are aspirational and transformational. We test and support our design objectives with practical knowledge and rigorous viability assessment.
We were able to assist at Arborfield Green Garden Village by testing and adapting the existing masterplan for 2,000 new homes and a neighbourhood centre. Helping our client Crest Nicholson to take forward their strategic plans for the site.
Architecture students from Anglia Ruskin University on a tour of Beaulieu, Chelmsford. Director Graham Kime, who has been involved with the project from the masterplanning stage, gave a presentation and was on hand to answer questions.
The students visited the neighbourhood centre which is under construction, and the first residential phase, which is now complete.
Birmingham City Council are amongst those awarded a share of the government’s £32 million estate regeneration fund.
We were delighted to see our award-wining estate regeneration design for Park Central, Birmingham used as the illustration on the Placemaking Resource website.
We are delighted that our Passivhaus Retrofit project Wilmcote House, for Portsmouth Council, appears in the RIBA Re-Use Atlas by Duncan Baker-Brown.
The book is a great read – we would recommend it!
We are delighted to be appointed to work on the next phase of South Oxhey town centre regeneration, working in partnership with Three Rivers District Council, Countryside and Home Group.
The scheme will deliver mixed-use, mixed-tenure regeneration and a wide range of different dwelling types from one bedroom flats to 4 bedroom townhouses. The focus of this phase will be a new market place and events space.
Finchampstead, Berkshire features in The Sunday Times Best Places To Live Guide. Judges assessed the whole country to decide on the definitive top locations. Criteria included jobs, exam results and broadband speed, to culture, community spirit and local shops. The judges combined statistics with their own experience of the shortlisted places.
Amenities such as local pubs, ease of transport and the range of attractive property were assessed to ensure the chosen locations truly are places where families can thrive. Our work at Arborfield Green, which is designed to Garden Village principles, will contribute to the choice of high quality homes in the area.
This aerial photo shows progress at Beaulieu Square in Chelmsford. This is one of the first phases of the masterplan for the Beaulieu urban extension.
This neighbourhood centre will provide a 600sqm community centre, 1,175sqm retail space, including an anchor food store, a health centre, nursery, restaurant & 34 apartments. The buildings are arranged around a public square and events space.
Our design for Station Square, South Oxhey has received unanimous approval at planning committee. The scheme was the result of a collaborative process - developed in partnership with Three Rivers District Council, Home Group and Countryside.
The new Station Square will deliver 16,000sqft of retail and commercial space, and will completely transform the existing public square making it more accessible and pedestrian friendly.
We are delighted that our work at Park Central forms the poster for the Estate Regeneration Forum.
The Housing Forum begins 2017 working with DCLG and GLA discussing the Estate Regeneration National Strategy and the London Mayor’s Good Practice Guide.
GSA have obtained planning permission and listed building consent for our client CityWest Homes for a package of building environmental improvement works to be incorporated into their on-going landlord maintenance programme across the grade-II listed housing estate designed by architect Berthold Lubetkin Hallfield Estate near Paddington, London
The estate houses over 2,300 people in 650 flats. The range of environmental improvements include increased ventilation, upgraded space heating and improved insulation and moisture control of the external building fabric - all to work within the heritage constraints of the listed building status and to be implemented with residents in place.
Our design for the final phase at Oakgrove Village has been approved by Milton Keynes Council under delegated powers – again! Phase 5 features 73 dwellings - a wide range of contemporary house types from 1 and 2 bedroom apartments to 5 bedroom detached houses.
Continuing the theme from the highly successful previous phases, the ‘Ouzel Island’ features distinctive bespoke house designs set within a landscaped setting, with great views over the beautiful Ouzel Valley. The new homes will be located in close proximity to the new neighbourhood centre and acres of green, open space.