Sheppard Robson gets green light for residential-led project in Woolwich

11th October 2017

Sheppard Robson has received planning permission from The Royal Borough of Greenwich Council for a residential-led, 298-unit development in Woolwich, London.  The project includes the refurbishment of five existing buildings and the addition of four new brick blocks, weaving together office, retail, cultural and community spaces around a new public square.

 For client Powis Street Estates Ltd., the £160m development sits on a one hectare site, with the careful composition of old and new buildings defining the edges of a new public space at the centre of the urban block. This civic space will animate the development and provides access to a new arts cinema, relocated dance school as well as café, restaurant and retail facilities.

Alan Shingler, partner at Sheppard Robson, said:  “We are delighted that the project has got the go-ahead by a unanimous decision. The design involves a series of deft interventions that help embed the development within its urban context. Whilst the architectural language of the new blocks is distinctly modern, we have referenced the surrounding – mostly Victorian – buildings and highstreets.

“This dialogue between old and new results in a design that remains sensitive to the urban characteristics of the adjacent streets, including the adjacent Bathway Quarter, as well as improving connections with the Love Lane and the Powis Street retail area.”

The design positions lower-rise blocks, made from red brick, around the perimeter of the site; the scale and materiality of these are consistent with the adjacent highstreets. The Wellington Street elevation is animated by a series of metal, geometrically-faceted dormers that relate to the varying and more decorative rooflines found on the street.

The elevation on Thomas Street has a roofline made up of simpler forms, reflecting the more regular architectural styles of the street. The facades are defined by a repetitive rhythm to the windows, which are either flush or recessed, depending on the orientation and the solar shading required.

The three taller new buildings have been designed in a lighter brick, and these distinctive forms help signal the entrances to the new public realm. Whilst the facades of the lower-rise blocks follow a single-height bay structure, these taller elements have a double-height bay structure to the façade, helping them sit comfortably within their urban setting.