A transformative joint masterplan by LDA Design and dRMM for the Queensway estate in Southend-on-Sea has secured outline consent. It was developed in close consultation with local residents.
This new model for urban regeneration is set to bring over £500 million investment into the existing estate. Re-development is anticipated to act as a catalyst for wider social and economic uplift and spark further improvements to the town centre.
A hybrid application put forward by Porters Place Southend-on-Sea LLP, a joint venture between Swan Housing and Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, has been approved by the council’s development control committee. Detailed consent for highway changes has also been secured.
The estate’s four tower blocks will make way for up to 1,760 modern new homes focussed around a network of public open space, including a park and two inviting public squares. In response to local feedback, this will be a playful landscape, with pocket parks and integrated play on the way – a better place for children to grow up. At least 512 homes will be genuinely affordable homes.
Overcoming the severance of the Estate caused by a dual carriageway in a cutting – created by an underpass and grade separated roundabout – is key to creating a thriving new community here. Queensway Road will be brought to surface level, with traffic speed reduced to 30mph. LDA Design and dRMM have been working closely with Civic Engineers to improve mobility.
The new development will be stitched into the surrounding neighbourhood through a fine grain of pedestrian friendly streets and pathways, with buildings responding to variations in scale and built heritage, including the Victorian red-brick All Saints Church. New dedicated cycle lanes and pedestrian footpaths will be introduced, and the new Queensway Road will be lined with trees, making walking or cycling to the town centre or seafront easier, safer and more pleasant.
The masterplan will also provide a greener and more sustainable Queensway. Not only will every home have its own private outdoor space whether it be a balcony, terrace or garden; there will also be new green spaces, 190 new trees and 1,400 metres of new cycle paths. Electric car charging points, greener energy generation and sustainable construction methods will also improve the overall environmental performance of the development.
The plan also adds up to 10,000 square metres of commercial space to the mix, including shops and cafés, employment space for start-up businesses and creative industries and a creche or nursery. A community concierge will be on hand to support residents and provide improved and centralised estate management.
Mark Williams, a director at LDA Design and project lead for Better Queensway, explains the approach: “The LDA/dRMM masterplan for Better Queensway has been a social endeavour from start to finish. We began by developing a deep understanding of the local community’s concerns, needs and aspirations for the £500m regeneration.
“Our vision sets out to end the severance created by the Queensway Road, bringing it up to surface level so that the masterplan can break down the Estate enclave into a better connected, sociable place for people of all ages to feel a sense of belonging. We can’t wait to see a better Queensway emerge, with the community benefitting from day one, including from improved access to green space.”
Images of Better Queensway copyright LDA Design / Porters Place Southend-on-Sea LLP
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