July 22, 2018

Mecanoo to transform railway line into green corridor connecting the city


Mecanoo has released images of its plans to transform a former railway line in taichung, taiwan into a bio-diverse green corridor. the site, which measures a total length of one mile, was a catalyst for the development of the old city, traversing its downtown. Although formerly an important means of connection, today the disused railway divides the city and impedes circulation from one side of the tracks to the other.mecanoo

Mecanoo’s proposal uses the rail line to reconnect the different parts of the city in a sustainable way. as part of the plan, an inviting green corridor will include bike and pedestrian lanes to better cater to the needs of the community. At the same time, the scheme seeks to maintain the area’s strong historical character with a layout that relies on the railway’s configuration to integrate the site’s existing and future functions.

According to the design team, the green corridor will: support the conservation and development of the area’s flora and fauna; improve connections for pedestrians and bike users in taichung center; and integrate existing and newly added functions to the area into a coherent linear park. Meanwhile, amenities such as gardens, fitness areas, a playground, and a waterpark will create an urban destination for leisure and recreation activities.


Engineers to review Old Oak Common works


A pair of engineers will review works carried out at Old Oak Common as part of an independent review board, New Civil Engineer can reveal.

AKT II founder Hanif Kara and Arup Head of UKMEA Planning Richard de Cani are among 22 engineers, architects and local government bodies which will provide expertise to the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC).

Arup architect Sowmya Parthasarathy has also been added to the OPDC Review Group which will be independently assessing the HS2 and Elizabeth Line interchange.

UCL professor in urban design and chair of the OPDC Place Review Group Peter Bishop said that the project has “huge design challenges” which should “set the standards for the future”.

“Old Oak Common will be the most important new development opportunity in London since the Olympics at Stratford,” Bishop said.

“Situated on the interchange between Crossrail and High Speed 2, with proximity to central London and Heathrow, its potential is enormous. But this area has huge design challenges.

“The role of the panel will be to assist the OPDC design an exemplary new piece of London, a place that builds on its history and its existing communities to be a location of choice for people to work, live and visit.

“Old Oak Common should aspire to be the next London paradigm that sets the standards for the future.”

Chairman of OPDC Liz Peace CBE added: “ODPC has set ambitious design standards for development in its area in our Draft Local Plan, and the Place Review Group provides independent expert advice to support OPDC in achieving these aims.”

OPDC Place Review Group members:

Peter Bishop (chair)          UCL / Allies and Morrison

Adam Brown                     Landolt + Brown

Adriana Marques              Peabody

Andrew Thornhill              Churchman Landscape Architects

Anthony Hollingsworth      London Legacy Development Corporation

Beth Kay                           London Borough of Haringey

Biba Dow                          Dow Jones Architects

David Bonnett                   David Bonnett Associates

David Lyndon                    Lyndon Goode Architects

Gillian Horn                      Penoyre & Prasad

Graeme Sutherland          Adams & Sutherland

Hanif Kara                        AKT II

Karen Scurlock                 Karakusevic Carson Architects

Linda Thiel                       White Arkitekter

Paul Monaghan               AHMM

Philip Marsh                    dRMM

Richard de Cani              Arup

Robin Nicholson             Cullinan Studio

Roger Hawkins               Hawkins\Brown

Sowmya Parthasarathy   Arup

Vincent Lacovara            London Borough of Croydon

Will Durden                     Momentum Transport Consultancy



Pegasus Group works on landscape proposal for Grade II Listed masterpiece


Plans to convert Grade II listed buildings in Surrey into a retirement living complex have proved to be a landscape architect’s dream merging historic and contemporary designs. National consultancy Pegasus Group was appointed to provide landscape design to support Eden Retirement Living’s proposals to turn Grade II*-listed CEMEX House, originally designed by architect Ted Cullinan, into an 81-home ‘later living’ village near Egham.

The landscape design includes walled gardens for allotments and informal lawns that could be used for bowls and croquet. The development stands within a parkland-style landscape complete with an ornamental pond. The buildings sit within Green Belt and blend into the landscape through the integration of an extensive green roof.

Pegasus Group, which was appointed last November, worked closely with architects, Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt adopting an integrated and progressive design approach.

A detailed planning application was submitted in April. Andrew Cook, Pegasus Group executive director, said: “This is a large site, rich in historical context and design layout. To work on a project of this kind is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that every landscape architect dreams of.

“It provides a combination of green roof and courtyard design, herbaceous formal and walled gardens, an arboretum parkland, lakes and its associated habitats which then merge with the innovative contemporary new build architecture that provides opportunities for 21st Century contemporary landscape design to further enhance the site.”

Due to Ted Cullinan’s innovative design, the proposals would see the existing roof gardens restored, taking the initial design concepts and reinstating them as originally envisioned by Cullinan himself.

The scheme also includes high-quality formal gardens and gazebos to take in the views. Arboretum Parkland would include feature tree species, new seating, footpaths and artwork. A sheltered gazebo is also proposed which could be used for yoga classes. The plans also include a building with mezzanines to provide additional residential apartments complete with green roof garden design and an extensive ecological corridor.

Pegasus Group has more than 260 skilled and experienced staff operating from 12 offices across 11 locations throughout the UK. Their services span the entire project process from planning through to design and delivery, specialising in planning, design, environment, economics and transport.


Landmark Place awarded Gold by Considerate Constructors Scheme


Barratt London’s Landmark Place project team has been awarded a Gold Considerate Constructors Award at the National Site Awards 2018.

This recognition is awarded to sites for outstanding contributions towards improving the image of construction. To win an award, judges look at what measures a site has put in place to be more considerate towards local neighborhoods and the public, the workforce, and the environment.

This award is coveted by developers, but for Barratt London, achieving such an accolade at Landmark Place is even more significant, as it sits next to one of London’s most popular tourist sites, The Tower of London.

Stephen Thompson, managing director, Barratt East London, remarks: “Building a new development in an environment as constricted as the City of London is very difficult and inevitably causes some disruption. At Landmark Place, the site team has gone well beyond what was expected to ensure that our neighbours and the public have experienced as little disturbance as possible, which makes this award especially significant.”

For more information and prices, please contact the marketing suite on 020 3475 1020 or visit: barrattlondon.com/landmarkplace

Winning design gives new look to Berkshire Botanical Garden


A new gateway is greeting visitors to the Berkshire Botanical Garden. The 4,000-square-foot entry garden, in front of the Center House, is the result of a nationwide competition involving individuals and teams of students enrolled in accredited landscape architecture programs.

The winning design, by a team attending the School of Landscape Architecture at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, was selected by a five-member jury of independent designers, horticulturalists and landscape architects.

“Over the last few weeks, the work has progressed rapidly,” said director of Horticulture Dorthe Hviid “The fountain and stonework is almost complete. The landscape has been graded into little hills and berms, three native larches and six Winter King hawthorn trees have been planted around the fountain, all serving to screen out the highway.

“This week, the horticulture staff and interns along with volunteers are planting 3,500 plugs of Sporobolus heterolepis — prairie dropseed — throughout the area. The Sporobolus is softening the garden and giving it an air of modern simplicity.”

The Berkshire Botanical Garden launched the design competition in March 2017 to seek an innovative proposal that would complement the design of the newly restored and expanded Center House.

“The winning design impressed all of us with its clean and modern look that will work well with the traditional facade of the Center House and the surrounding established garden areas,” said executive director Michael Beck.

The competition winners were announced last December at the grand opening celebration of the Garden’s Center House. Student teams from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design took second- and third-place awards. A group from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University received honorable mention.

Describing “huge progress over the last month,” Beck said “you can now get a sense of how these structural grass mounds will move in the wind on the hills we have sculpted. Visitors will enter through a stone-clad council circle that is quite dramatic, with water and even fire.”

Last year, about 23,000 visited the garden, up 30 percent from 2016. That total includes guests attending special events and taking part in year-round horticultural and educational programs, Beck said.

Renovation of the Center House, which dates back in part to around 1790, began in November 2016 and included the addition of a teaching kitchen, art galleries, a botanical library, classroom and office space.

“The $2.4m building project was the key to expanding adult and youth educational programming, as well as special events,” Beck said.

The Berkshire Botanical Garden, at the intersection of Routes 102 and 183 in Stockbridge (5 West Stockbridge Road) is open year-round for classes, lectures, workshops and exhibits. The display gardens are open daily from 9 to 5, May 1 through Columbus Day. Information: berkshirebotanical.org.