2 & 2A
2 & 2A Guildford Road, Chertsey KT16 9BJ
Welcome to the public consultation website for the proposed development of 2 & 2A Guildford Road, Chertsey. The project intends to deliver a high quality residential scheme comprising 70 apartments. A detailed Planning Application for the redevelopment of the site bounded by the railway will be submitted following this consultation.
Project background and summary design process
The Ascot Design Team has been working with its client and Runnymede Borough Council, through a number of pre-application discussions, to develop an efficient, sustainable design which will enhance the local area and seek to deliver on the urban regeneration aspirations as detailed in the local strategic plan.
During this pre-application consultation phase with the Local Authority, 2 preliminary designs have been submitted for its review and commentary. A summary of the development of the design has been included within our Design and Access statement as a record of the evolution of the scheme prior to the final submission of the Application.
Aim, philosophy & concept
The aim of this project was to take the opportunity to enhance the surrounding area with the redevelopment of a current brownfield site to make the most efficient use of the site while designing a piece of high quality architecture to give back to the local area.
The project brief was to develop the current brownfield site to allow enhancement of the local area. The site presents an opportunity to create a ‘Gateway Building’ with its location immediately next to the railway station. Its position, only 500m from the main high street, results in an optimum location for dense urban town centre residential accommodation. The site’s location allows a focal point to be developed, by creating a landmark building within the town centre, to support and enhance the pending Chertsey master plan.
The layout was developed directly from the constraints and opportunities of the site resulting in a scheme which responds appropriately to its context. The current design enables the building to have an active frontage connecting it with the street and the local infrastructure.
The railway provides a natural buffer between the site and the neighbouring buildings to the north, meaning the boundary is less sensitive in terms of separation distance and building heights.
The buildings to the south east are residential and therefore careful consideration has been given to designing a scheme that minimises the impact on aspect or outlook. The final design provides greater separation distances than will be required for those properties to the north where the railway acts as a buffer as mentioned above.
Similar consideration has been given for neighbouring buildings to the south of the development. Here, separation distances have been improved through the "terrace effect" created by the setting back of various elements on different storeys of the proposed design.
The design has been through a number of iterations as described below. We have worked closely with RBC to ensure the proposed development is aligned to its strategic plan, meets its planning requirements and is the most appropriate fit for the site. The initial design was for 74 units, as shown in the "proposed site plan" and was made up of 6 storeys to the north and 5 to the south. As part of the aspiration to create an attractive "Gateway" into Chertsey, in particular for those arriving into the station, the proposal was to construct the development close to the front of the site and to incorporate an "active frontage" into the design. This had the additional benefit of creating space to the rear of the site for residential amenities including parking.
2nd design iteration - pre-planning application
Following consultation with RBC teams, including planning and highways, a number of changes were made to the initial design prior to the pre-planning application submission. These included:
1. Reduce massing of building: By increasing the footprint of the development, we have both reduced the height of the new building and also achieved greater separation distances for the upper floors from neighbouring properties, thus minimising the impact on their outlook/aspect.
2. Adopt Highways strategy for zero parking: The initial plan allowed for 24 parking spaces. However, following consultation with RBC, we have designed a new solution which supports its vision to maximise the use of public transport and to minimise traffic movements and the impact on the environment.
3. Improved communal spaces and environment: the second design allowed for a greater area of communal outdoor spaces for residents and a greener, more environmentally friendly site. Furthermore, as well as retaining the vast majority of existing trees, the plan is to add to the planting as part of the development process.
Updated pre-planning application
During the pre planning application, the site plan and building footprint was developed further to create a more organic and efficient shape within the site, instead of multiple areas of articulation in the scheme.
This more efficient use of the footprint area allowed a much more detailed articulation of the upper floors of the building to reduce the scale and mass of the scheme. The reduction of floor space on upper floors allowed 70 units with a greater number of first time buyer properties and 6 spaces to be provided to limit additional traffic in the town centre location. This layout also allowed more space for communal areas in a more consistent green border surrounding the site and increased separation distances on upper floors to allow greater privacy to existing residents.
Chertsey Properties Limited
Ascot Design Ltd.
39/51 High Street
Berkshire SL5 7HY
The planning consultant
The site layout has been carefully and sensitively designed to fit with its surroundings. The design of the building reflects the shape of the overall site whilst respecting its boundaries. The proposed building is situated in such a way that it maximises the potential for an "active frontage" onto Guildford Road. Furthermore, the proposed position of the development ensures that separation distances are greatest from the residential units to the South East.
As detailed in the Design and Access Statement, the site is ideally located in the town centre and in close proximity to the train station. This makes it an ideal location for the creation of a new residential development which will help enhance and maintain the character of the local area.
As detailed above, the proposed design has been continuously evolved through a period of pre-application consultation with RBC. As a result, the final development proposal that will be submitted for planning approval now includes a reduced number of units, massed and stepped in such a way that the impact on neighbouring buildings is minimised. The 70 units now being proposed comprise a mixture of studio and 1 & 2 bedroom apartments with an associated cycle store and waste storage. The building will include 3, 5, and 6 storey elements.
Appearance and character
There is no predominant local vernacular in this town centre location as it has been developed over several hundred years, meaning no specific building character can be applied. The proposed materials have been combined at particular storey heights to make the building more legible by responding to the changes in plane. The combination of a brickwork plinth (three storeys) with a lighter cladding material on the upper floors (top three storeys) breaks up the massing, with the plinth responding to the scale of the adjacent buildings.
The stepping of the floors and change of materials creates greater articulation and interest in the building facade. In this instance, the articulation is enhanced with the terraces on the upper floors to create a ‘layered’ appearance from east to west and south to north and a soft transition from the existing buildings.
Architectural character/materials and detailing
The local area is made up of a variety architectural styles partly as a result of it having been built up over different eras and this lack of uniformity means there are fewer constraints to the design in terms of style? The one consistently used architectural feature is the brick facade and therefore this has been incorporated into the design.
Access & design
The scheme is designed to be fully accessible under Part M of the Building Regulations in both the communal areas and the apartments. This includes level thresholds, compliant door widths, compliant bathrooms, and accessible balconies and terraces.
The entrance will be well lit as part of a lighting strategy and level thresholds will be incorporated along with the use of slip resistance flooring keeping the area trip hazard free at all times. Any glass panels and doors will be appropriately identified with manifestations in accordance with Part M of the building regulations.
The design will be compliant to the principles of lifetime homes (newly incorporated into the approved documents) and the scheme is compliant to London Housing Design Guide and the local authority space standard.
The building has been designed to be compliant with Part B (Fire) of the Building Regulations. The fire doors in the corridors have a fail-safe system in place to allow automatic opening in the event of a fire or emergency and these mechanisms will be testing and inspected as part of the buildings management and maintenance programme. The lift and stair cores are designed for fire-fighting and safe escape. All corridors have automatically operated smoke vents.
The scheme has been designed to the principles of Secure By Design including; controlled ground floor access, 3 tier security, high speculation locks, and security location.
Parking, Bicycle storage and bin stores are all accessed via the main lift and staircase and are secure. Travel distance to all bin stores is compliant with regulations.
We believe that the proposed scheme represents an appropriate use of the available land and is a suitable form of development for the following reasons;
• It represents a sustainable and appropriate redevelopment of an existing brown field site to provide suitable residential accommodation for today’s housing requirements with the construction of 70no. high quality apartments within a central town location;
• The scheme has been specifically designed to fit within the fabric of the existing site, while strengthening the local vicinity in terms of scale, massing, appearance & character and becomes as a transitional landmark building between the commercial and contemporary town centre to the north of the railway and the more traditional residential areas to the south of the railway;
• The scheme reflects and reinforces the existing street scene with an active frontage;
• The proposal will enhance the local town with the creation of a ‘Gateway Building’, enabling a focal point to be created with a direct relationship to the neighbouring railway station.
• The scheme will enhance the existing site and uplift the character of the local area in line with the proposals as stated in the Chertsey Master Plan.
• The scheme’s location allows the effective and sustainable use of existing infrastructure and services instead of requiring the creation of new or upgraded services.
Other information concerning Site Analysis, Local Town Developments, Height & Massing, Safety & Privacy and Waste Management can be found on the Design & Access Statement accessed via the button below.
Comments & Support
Ascot Design would be delighted to receive all comments and messages of support. Kindly utilise the form below to email us.
Ascot Design Ltd.
39/51 High Street
Berkshire SL5 7HY