Staffordshire University Masterplan Stoke-on-Trent, UK
Sheppard Robson worked with Planit Landscape Architects to develop a masterplan and public realm strategy for Staffordshire University on their Stoke Campus, with the aim of improving coherence, connectivity and a better student experience.
Previously the campus was separated into two distinct zones by roads and a wall that created cul-de-sac streets of poor quality. Part of our strategy, linked to the design of major new capital schemes, was to open up these routes and to give a clear, single identity to the public realm. Over time the campus had become dominated by car parking, and we developed a plan for relocating these parking spaces to the periphery, opening up development plots and giving priority to pedestrians.
Another key part of the strategy was to open up access to the River Trent that runs alongside the campus, including the nature reserve that many of the existing student halls face away from. As the masterplan developed, a long term process of rethinking and refreshing the University's residential offer was undertaken, addressing key deficiencies that the students themselves had identified.
The masterplan process linked local authority concerns with various local education partners, the staff and students, regional regeneration partnerships and local residents, and enabled the estates team to define the priorities for its campus where targeted investment to achieve improved utilisation and a quality experience was key.
The majority of proposals within the masterplan have been delivered, and staff and students now have a campus environment that they can be proud of.