Sailing on at the Thames Gateway

Tuesday 19 May 2009

Creative hub development gets go ahead

Proposals for a vibrant cultural and creative hub in East London have received a huge boost as planning permissionhas been granted for the development of the Creative Industries Quarter (CIQ). The proposals were submitted by London Thames Gateway Development Corporation (LTGDC) as part of a wider regeneration of the Barking area.

The schmidt hammer lassen architects (shla) design will bring two existing 19thcentury buildings (the Malthouse and the Granary) back into use for the 21st centurycreating 220 residential units, workspaces for local artists, a new public square, communityfacilities and better public transport links across the River Roding.

The design places new buildings around the periphery of the site’s existingindustrial structures, forming a public space at the heart of the project. The boundary is punctuated at strategic pointsby a number of entrances which frame views of the Malthouse and Granary as well asconnecting the site with the neighbouring area and allowing light into the heart of thedevelopment, creating views out across the river and marshlands.

Aiming to preserve the industrial, gritty character of the site the design uses brickwork that is both sensitive to, and inspired by, the Malthouse and the Granary, the use of which was developed through analysis of archives from the area. At the same time a scheme of varied character has been produced; the new buildings are ofvarying heights and scale with differing facade treatments which respond to both the urbancontext and the landscape.

Stephen Willacy, of SHL architects, said: “We are delighted that this culturally importantscheme has been given the green light. The Malthouse and Granary are two of the few lastingexamples of fine industrial architectural in Barking so it is vital that people rediscover thehistoric character of these buildings whilst adapting them for new uses, including much needresidential accommodation.”

220 new homes of which up to 35% will be affordable are also incorporated in the scheme as well as the facilitation of a new public transport bridge and open public spaces.

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