TODD Architects has submitted plans to redevelop an underused car park above a shopping centre in Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire, into 119 apartments.Totaling approximately 8,800 sqm, the mix of one and two bed units, alongside a number of three bed family homes, will sit above The Pavilions Shopping Centre in the heart of the town. The homes will be contained in two blocks connected by exterior walkways, with internal amenity space and a landscaped roof terrace and garden, accessible to all residents. Explains John Chapman at TODD: “We have worked closely with our client, Killultagh Estates Ltd, as well as Broxbourne Borough Council, to seize the opportunity and create a contemporary design that will turn underutilised car parking decks into a desirable and viable residential development. By bringing residents into the heart of the town, this development has the potential to boost the high street and its hard-pressed retailers.”TODD’s design replaces the dated and visually cluttered façade, removing the brooding red brick and establishing a light, clean palette with a gradation of tonal colour easing the structure into its surroundings and improving the backdrop for the nearby listed sculpture of Alexander of Abingdon, colloquially known as ‘Eleanor Cross’. Glass balustrades and glass clad panels on the upper levels will play with the natural light and help articulate the building. Expanded aluminium mesh will enliven the parking structure whilst a reconfigured retail area will include uniform shop fronts and an airy, welcoming glazed entrance to the shopping centre.External green spaces are a core element of the design, with landscaped areas and green roofs aiming to improve local bio-diversity as well as residents’ well-being. The main roof garden is interspersed with semi-circular and irregular rounded ‘planters’ which act as benches and create a meandering walk, whilst the roof terrace is designed with a mix of hard and soft landscaping, together with seating area, pergola, artificial lawn, games area and BBQ space.Concludes Chapman: “This is an important and exciting development, part of an emerging trend to add residential – and other – elements to shopping centres to improve their viability by creating a critical mass of people and attractions in one place. We’ve been able to use our experience of residential and retail design to ‘rightsize’ the underused car parking decks, replacing them with a dynamic and distinctive addition to the town’s architectural portfolio. The new apartments are in an ideally sustainable location, and its proximity to the local rail station will offer a unique opportunity for commuters when the town’s Crossrail 2 station opens, by 2030.”
Leading in the field of building news reporting, Building Design & Construction Magazine is one of the most respected and referenced sources of building news, features, interviews.