Archive for the ‘Urban Design’ Category

Bangladesh Government Delegation visit to Milford-on-sea Beach Huts

Friday, October 6th, 2017

New Forest District Council and Snug Architects hosted a delegation of visitors from Bangladesh today (Friday 6 October 2017) interested in UK coastal defence measures.

Representatives from the Bangladesh Water Development Board (BWDB) met with representatives from the council and Snug Architects, who designed the beach huts, to hear how the council is taking a holistic approach to coastal sea defence.

The twelve visitors then went on to see the recently-completed beach huts at Milford-on-Sea as part of the senior officials’ visit to the UK, Holland and Germany to look at examples of coastal engineering, infrastructure development, and emergency management.

Bangladesh has a difficult coastline with many rivers and distributaries which are often affected by natural hazards such as cyclones, coastal flooding and tidal surges. The Bangladesh government believes that by focusing on these key areas, the country will better be able to cope with the extreme flooding which at times covers 26,000kms of the country.

The visit to the Milford-on-sea beach huts was to see how they have been designed and built as inhabited infrastructure  able to both withstand severe coastal weather and provide for various types of value added inhabitation. It is hoped this will help when designing this type of infrastructure upon the officials’ return to Bangladesh.

Steve Cook, Coastal manager at NFDC said, “We are extremely proud of the beach huts, which had to be rebuilt due to severe weather damage which destroyed the huts that were here in 2014.  Working with the architects we have built the replacement huts so that they can withstand a 1:200 year storm event.”

The project demonstrates that through creative engagement between funders, authorities and their design teams, significant added value can be achieved when delivering essential infrastructure. The project, although small in scale, represents some big ideas. Our hope is that it will inspire others to take a similar approach elsewhere. Perhaps and not least in Bangladesh.

Form Follows Force Part 2

Wednesday, August 9th, 2017

Here are the second batch of images on our new housing and apartment typologies. These images explore how a large scale settlement edge development can be sympathetically integrated into its setting, creating a humane settlement edge where people will love to live and impact is minimised. Let us know what you think….


Central Winchester SPD goes live

Friday, July 14th, 2017

We are proud to announce that the vision for the central Winchester masterplan has now been presented to the public.

Working with JTP Architects and involving extensive public engagement we have developed a vision for a pedestrian friendly quarter in central Winchester. This includes:

  • a new mixed-use quarter, including retail, market, commercial, cultural, housing and community uses to complement the city centre and serve the whole community
  • plans for attractive buildings, streets and places, designed and laid out with a Winchester character and scale – described as “Winchesterness”.
  • a range of active and restful spaces in the heart of the city, including the opening up of the brook to the east of the site
  • developing a footprint for the way the public realm will be developed across the whole area
  • creating a new bus hub and routing buses away from The Broadway and High Street to allow for environmental improvements to accommodate markets and other street based activities.

These proposals will now inform the development of a Supplementary Planning Document for the future development of the site.

Milford-on-Sea Beach Huts ready for occupation

Thursday, May 18th, 2017
 
Milford-on-Sea Beach Huts and Public Realm Improvements 
The Milford-on-Sea Beach Huts and Public Realm Improvements at have now been completed.
After the original terrace of beach huts were severely damaged in a huge storm on Valentine’s Day 2014, New Forest District Council agreed to replace the 119 beach huts and, following our involvement, took the decision to use the opportunity to improve Milford’s seafront for residents and visitors.
The brief was to design identical replacement huts that could withstand a 1:200 year storm event. Critical constraints were; there could be no increase in the height or change to the location of the huts. Through engagement with the public and a public exhibition, attended by over 600 local residents, we were able to establish support for significant enhancements to the project. The most significant was moving the promenade onto the roof. This has opened up a whole new waterfront experience, visitors now able to enjoy uninterrupted views  of the coastline and the Needles. This increase in the area of upper prom then allowed us to move the beach huts further back, away from the sea, reducing their exposure, widening the lower prom and increasing the space available for beach hut owners.
The new huts are very robust, constructed of concrete c-sections with precast graphic concrete front panels and marine ply doors. The beach hut owners were presented with a carefully selected pallet of colours to choose from for their new doors. Our objective was to achieve vibrant highlights of yellow and pink against a predominantly blue back drop. The challenge was how to achieve this whilst having no control over peoples individual colour choices. To achieve this we banked on blue being peoples favourite choice. To ensure this would become the dominant colour we provided a choice of vibrant pint, a zesty yellow and a subtly distinctive lime green as well as two shades of blue. The result was a randomly selected colour scheme that achieved exactly what we were hoping.
 
In addition to these primary moves, the scheme also benefits from a number of more subtle marginal gains. By narrowing the party walls we have been able to shorten the overall length so that one whole terrace of huts could be removed from the most exposed section of the waterfront. This has the added benefit of opening up new views, and along a greater extent of the promenade.

A walkway with handrails has been installed along the tops of the beach huts, with connecting bridges between sections of terraces enabling pedestrians to enjoy the spectacular Solent views from an elevated position. Steps up to the rooftop walkway from the rear upper promenade double as extra seating for visitors, interspersed with benches.A galvanised steel ramp now curves around the World War II pillbox at the western end of the site and concrete ramps have been installed to give wheelchair users and pushchairs access to both promenades.

Construction techniques more common to civil engineering projects were employed to create structures designed to withstand the conditions. Pre-cast concrete sections form the body of the huts. The design is softened by concrete front panels featuring a range of coastal-inspired designs from pebbles to Keyhaven River and the Needles. A new sea wall has also been incorporated into the rear of the huts to improve the coastal defences.

 
The project is an exercise in concrete design and the use of a bespoke Reckli formwork liner allowed us to create a bespoke piece of public artwork on the end of each terrace, adjacent to the improved access steps.

The project was managed by a project team made up of NFDC councillors and officers along with representatives of Milford Parish Council and the New Forest Beach Hut Owners’ Association.Engineering consultancy Ramboll UK Ltd led the design development of the scheme for NFDC, appointing Totton-based Snug Architects to develop the vision. Importantly, early design ideas were shared with the public and their views taken into consideration when the project team selected the preferred design.

Damian Westlake of Ramboll UK Ltd, who led the design team said “We were delighted to have the opportunity to design and supervise this interesting and challenging scheme. The design started with an aspiration to enhance the waterfront, provide robust beach huts and meet the needs of beach hut users, local people and visitors. Through close working with NFDC, project stakeholders and latterly with Raymond Brown Construction Ltd, we believe that the new beach huts and promenade areas have been designed and constructed in a way that fully realises this aspiration.

Following design development and public feedback the scope of the scheme expanded to include improving the public areas around the beach huts, which resulted in an increase in the original budget which had been based on like for like replacement. A budget of £1.26million was allocated in 2014 for the like for like replacement of 119 beach huts at Milford-on-Sea. The scheme expanded to include improvements to the public areas around the huts, resulting in a total investment in the seafront and 119 replacement beach huts of £2.36million. This includes £430,000 contributed to the rebuild costs by the owners of the 119 beach huts.

Raymond Brown Construction of Ringwood, began construction in September 2016 and completed the build on schedule. Kevin Valentine, Divisional Director for Raymond Brown Construction said: “It has been a pleasure to work with New Forest District Council on this project. Our team has worked diligently to deliver the scheme in time for the summer season and fully in line with expectations. I know we are all proud of the end result and hope the community and visitors alike will enjoy the new facilities”. 

 The result is a subtle transformed and highly distinctive new waterfront for both the beach hut owners, residents and visitors at Milford-on-Sea. The project is also an exercise in how sea defences can be effectively inhabited. The integration of sea wall, beach huts and promenade into a single integrated entity has resulted in significant added value and is a case study of how our coastlines could be transformed in an age of climate change.
Paul Bulkeley, Snug’s Design Director sums it up: “This is a great example of what can happen when you have an open minded client and dynamic collaboration between architect and engineer. This is how we will best solve societies emerging challenges. Together we were able to transform what was a disaster for the hut owners into an opportunity for all.”

The Valley, Stanmore submitted for planning

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

We are pleased to have submitted a full planning application for 76 new affordable houses at the Valley, Stanmore on behalf of Winchester City Council’s New Homes Delivery. This will be their largest scheme to date.

The scheme provides a mixture of 2 and 3 bedroom houses and 1, 2 and 3 bedroom flats. The site nestles into the steeply sloping topography creating a new edge to the existing park. The buildings  are positioned in response to existing and proposed patterns of movement through the site. The flats are pitched and facetted in response to the site geometry, reducing the perceived scale of the buildings and softening their impact on the landscape. The approach to the buildings form and appearance is derived from a contextual analysis of the existing Stanmore estate’s arts and crafts character and results in a significant new development that sits comfortably in its setting.

The application was developed through a comprehensive process of public engagement with the local community and will deliver much needed affordable housing for the city.

Elephant Cage – Part 2

Thursday, March 16th, 2017

Following last November’s involvement with the ‘Elephant Cage’ symposium, #ECage17, Richard joined a number of talented Anglo-Dutch Architects and Engineers on an invigorating and inspirational trip to the Netherlands, to reflect on the conceptual proposals for the ongoing strategy for Sea Defence along Southsea seafront.

As part of this trip Richard was able to view and talk to the original designers and engineers responsible for world renowned infrastructure projects that seek to integrate within their environment to enhance as well as protect the urban context.
It was heartening to find so many parallels with these global leaders in design and innovation, sharing many of the values and strategies that Snug has been promoting in our own work and thinking.
And of course, no trip to the Netherlands would be complete without a tour of some of the most sublime and eccentric architecture our planet has to offer! Markethaal by MVRDV; De Rotterdam by OMA; Delft Railway Station by Mechanoo and the Cube Houses by Piet Bloom to name just a few!
Thanks to @ProjCompass @ArchLokaal @arch_port  with our media sponsors the Architects Journal @ArchitectsJrnal 

Building in Context

Friday, February 3rd, 2017

 

This has got to be one of the best quotes I have ever heard on the reason for designing in context. Cllr Gottlieb, we love it.

Extract taken from the Hampshire Chronicle 2 February 2017.

A housing odyssey

Sunday, January 29th, 2017

 

This week we went on an epic urban design odyssey with @BargateHomes in search of great new housing schemes. Our 12 hours in a landrover took us first to Newhall in Harlow before heading up to Accordia, @GreatKneighton and Trumpington Meadows in Cambridge. Ahead of schedule we were even able to fit in an old favourite in Guildford on the way home by @jtparchitects. Our quest was to search out the best urban design and the best modern house types. It was hugely rewarding, often surprising, definitely challenging, with many a well published scheme disappointing. It was certainly inspiring and well worth the effort. Scroll down to enjoy the tour and discover the winning development….

we loved seeing a car jacked up at Stirling prize winning Accordia!

on balance and after all that there was unanimous agreement…….the winner in the ‘Snug architect best new housing development where everyone is a winner’ is Trumpington Meadows by @Barrattplc and @alliesmorrison.  It really shows just what a difference the @HCA_UK can make.

Unanimous approval at Milford-on-sea Beach Huts

Tuesday, January 24th, 2017

There was unanimous approval of the emerging Milford-on-sea Beach Huts following the stakeholder site visit this week. Senior representatives of the council and the beach hut owners association visited the site to review the partially complete proposals. There was particular satisfaction in the quality of both the graphic concrete and Reckli end panels, both of which, it was agreed, will contribute significantly to the quality of the public realm. We are looking forward to seeing the project completed in the spring.

Delighted to win Central Winchester SPD

Thursday, December 15th, 2016

Historic winchester map

We are delighted to have been selected as part of the team to work with JTP, an award-winning ‘placemaking’ practice of architects and masterplanners, to work with the Council and wider community to create a Supplementary Planning Document for what was known as Silverhill. This will set out a vision for the future development of central Winchester through collaborative planning and consultation.

The decision by Winchester City Council follows the consideration of 17 high quality bids received from organisations who were interested in working on the central Winchester project.

The council stated, ‘JTP has formed a strong team to work on the commission with Hampshire based Snug Architects and landscape architects Ubu Design together with consultancies with expertise in commercial property, movement and infrastructure.‘ We are due to start work on the project early in 2017.

Cllr Victoria Weston, Chairman of the Central Winchester Informal Policy Group said:

‘The Central Winchester Informal Policy Group is delighted to be working with JTP and their team on this exciting opportunity to work with the public and stakeholders to formulate guidance for the regeneration of central Winchester.’

Marcus Adams, Managing Partner at JTP said:

‘We recognise the significance of this site in activating the wider regeneration of Winchester, and appreciate its rich heritage which will play an important part in informing the framework.

Through our unique collaborative design processes we will aim to build a consensus to create a distinctive place, reimaging and enhancing the character and identity of Winchester.’

The Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) sets out the type and layout of land uses that could be built on the Silver Hill site and will help to ensure that the development is fit for the future and will rejuvenate such a prominent part of the City.

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