February 18, 2018

Plans submitted for £675,000 garden at Orthopaedic Hospital


A stunning garden for spinal injuries patients at the Orthopaedic Hospital is another step closure after plans were officially submitted.

Designed by award-winning gardener Bunny Guinness, the ambitious £675,000 project will be based at the Midlands Centre for Spinal Injuries in Gobowen thanks to the Horatio’s Garden team.

It will be only the fourth of its kind in the UK created in memory of Horatio Chapple, who wanted to be a doctor and volunteered at a spinal unit in Salisbury before he tragically died at the age of 17 when he was killed by a polar bear during a trip to the Arctic.

The garden will feature a garden room, which aims to give patients and their families time away from the ward.

There will also be raised beds to encourage patients to grow vegetables and flowers, plus a series of different surfaces and ramps for patients to practice on, and a small play area for visiting children.

A statement by agents 3W Architecture Limited says: “A small chicken run and chicken house will add interest and hopefully engage with patients and visitors alike. A raised serpentine rill constructed from local stone will help bring in wild life and will help create a relaxing but mesmerizing element. Finally an area of woodland planting just inside the boundary with the highway will add substantial vegetation to help create a green buffer and soften the current hospital landscape.

“Gardens are not static and to ensure that the plantings and buildings are successful the charity will employ a head gardener and project co-ordinator once the garden is open who together will care for the garden and buildings.”

An appeal to raise money for the garden was launched officially in October after the plans were first revealed to coincide with the Chelsea Flower Show.

It is hoped work can begin by the end of the year and will take around six months to complete.

Meanwhile, the hospital has submitted plans to create a new car park with spaces for more than 1,000 vehicles following the demolition of a unit to the rear of the site. It will also include electric charging points.


Bennetts takes on biggest DfMA project at New Grange Hospital


Bennett Architectural will undertake its biggest DfMA project to date, providing high quality glazing solutions for the £350m New Grange Hospital in Cwmbran, South Wales.

Bennetts will work alongside main contractor Laing O’Rourke, supplying and installing Kawneer AA100 curtain walling systems, doors and windows.

Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) will be used to add glazing to concrete panels off-site at Laing O’Rourke’s Explore Industrial Park before being transferred to Cwmbran.

Lionel Grant, Managing Director at Bennett Architectural commented,

“This is the biggest DfMA project we have taken on so far, but we have no doubt our multi-talented team will make light work of it.

“We have previously worked with Laing O’Rourke on three similar hospital projects in Staffordshire, Cumbria and Dumfries using DfMA, which has many construction and environmental benefits.”

Liam Cummins, Head of UK Building at Laing O’Rourke added,

“Our team brings a wealth of experience in innovative healthcare construction and in engineering expertise.

“We are absolutely focussed on delivering a hospital that the people of South Wales will be proud of.”

Work at The New Grange Hospital is set begin in the coming weeks and be completed in 2019.

Sadiq Khan proposes resident ballots for estate regeneration


City Hall funding for major estate regeneration in London will only be provided if residents vote in favour of the changes, the mayor has proposed.

Under the scheme, ballots for residents on projects where demolition is planned would become a condition for mayoral funding, Sadiq Khan suggested.

Mr Khan said he wanted to make sure those living on social housing estates “are at the heart of any decisions”.

The Conservatives said the announcement “smacks of pure cynicism”.

Launching his guide to housing estate regeneration, Mr Khan said he wanted to use his investment powers to give more say to residents.

Under the proposal, ballots will apply to schemes funded by the mayor’s office that involve the construction of at least 150 homes.

The mayor said that while he has limited sway over estate regeneration, he wanted to “use my investment powers in a way they have never been used before”.

“We need more social housing in London, not less, which is why I will use all my powers to make sure that any plans for estate regeneration protect existing social housing,” he said.

Conservative London Assembly Andrew Boff said Mr Khan had “consistently flip-flopped on this issue and refused to be drawn”.

“The fact he’s finally settled on a position in favour just weeks before his potential re-selection smacks of pure cynicism and self-interest,” he said

Green Party London Assembly member Sian Berry welcomed the announcement but accused the mayor of being “slow to bring out his guidance” having originally provided a draft in December 2016.

public consultation on the proposals will run until 3 April.


Image source


Nottingham City Council seek Developer for the regeneration of land surrounding Sherwood Library


The search is on to find a developer to regenerate the area surrounding a ‘run down’ library in Sherwood.

In December, the Post reported that Nottingham City Council wants to sell the site in Spondon Street to a developer, who would be required to redevelop the area and provide a new library as part of the agreement.

Under the plans, a mixed-use development comprising of a new library with a police contact point, shops, homes and public toilets would be created on land currently owned by the council.

The plans were subject to a public consultation and now the council has approved the beginning of a procurement process to identify a developer to carry out the work.

A statement from Nottingham City Council explained the sale of the site through a procurement process would ensure a “high quality new purpose built library” with no cost to the authority.

It states: “The council owns the freehold of the Spondon Street site that includes a car park, a former social services building, public toilets, a library and three retail units which fronts onto Mansfield Road in Sherwood.

“The retail units are occupied but coming towards the end of their viable commercial life and require substantial capital investment to bring them up to modern standards if they are to be retained.

“The library is well used by the public but it is in a similarly poor state of repair and presents a low quality image for the council.

“The former social services building is currently unused and the council is incurring holding costs. All parts of the site can therefore be made available for redevelopment.”

The plans have been welcomed by shoppers in the area.

Maria Ella, 66, of Sherwood, said: “It would be good to sell it if there is going to be a library. The current one is past its sell-by date.

“Houses are always needed in the area, as I think Sherwood is on the up at the moment.

“A lot of houses have gone up in value, and the shops, supermarkets and restaurants are better. More people are also moving around here.”

Janet Gillings, 62, of Arnold, said: “The library looks a bit run down and wants something doing with it. I am in support if they make it better.

“There is only one toilet there currently and it doesn’t always work, so new ones would be great.”

And Mike Webster, 58, of Sherwood, said: “I heard about this maybe happening a long time ago, but I thought they’d binned it.

“I think the shopping area of Sherwood is ok, but we mainly have eating places and or charity shops.

“The library definitely needs sorting out and we definitely need a police contact centre. We always need new houses around here.”


American Society of Landscape Architects praises introduction of Living Shorelines Act

American landscape

The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) applauds Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ) for introducing the Living Shorelines Act, which would provide critical funding to the nation’s coastal communities, and develop flood-resistant green infrastructure projects that integrate plants and local ecosystems.

In the aftermath of major hurricanes and superstorms, the United States has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in evacuation, clean-up and rebuilding efforts. The Living Shorelines Act will promote the use of nature-based systems and materials to help coastal communities address climate-related weather events and rebuilding efforts in a more resilient and cost-effective manner. The bill also includes a provision to require communities to monitor, collect and transmit data on living shoreline projects, which will provide critical metrics on the benefits of these green infrastructure projects.

Landscape architects are on the front lines of protecting coastal communities from the destructiveness of storms. They work with nature as they design projects that control flooding, restore shorelines and provide thriving eco-habitats. In designing these environments, they collaborate with local residents to ensure that the infrastructure provides opportunities for recreation and economic and educational benefits.

“The Living Shorelines Act is smart policy for our nation, and gives communities options for their planning toolbox,” says Nancy C. Somerville, Hon. ASLA, executive vice president and CEO of ASLA. “Green infrastructure helps position coastal communities to mitigate the impacts of natural disasters and provides critical services that improve human and environmental health.”

“As a landscape architect, I support this legislation because it will allow communities and design professionals to work together in developing long-term solutions for transforming our coastal communities,” says Kate Orff, ASLA, founder of SCAPE Landscape Architecture and the first landscape architect to receive a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. “Creating a built environment that protects and sustains us must include natural systems. Robust coastal ecosystems are critical next century infrastructure.”

ASLA urges all its members to use the iAdvocate Network to contact their members of Congress about cosponsoring this important legislation that will help protect coastal communities and highlight the critical role landscape architects play in their health, safety and welfare.