The client was developing a former orchard and heavily wooded site on the edge of the town settlement, maximising the development potential and aiming to gain planning approval for a profitable residential scheme.
The finished scheme would result in a sustainable residential eco-development generated in response to the environmental context of the site. The masterplan was to be driven by the clients three key principles
- To create an amazing place to live.
- To respect and enhance the environment.
- To be commercially viable.
Our role was as the Landscape Architects and Masterplanners of this project.
Extensive tree and ecological surveys were carried out to understand the existing value and likely constraints on development. Areas of high value were identified for retention where possible and the lower value areas were earmarked as suitable for development. The overall loss of amenity has been mitigated by extensive works and management regimes to the retained stock to increase ecological, arboricultural and amenity value.
The site is just under 1ha in area and has a change in level across it of over 8m. The challenges in dealing with levels were compounded by the extensive tree retention and root protection areas (RPAs), requiring much of the site to remain unchanged in terms of levels. To overcome this, roads and service runs rely on ‘no dig’ construction solutions in and around retained trees, knitted back into exiting levels using raised boardwalks as footpaths.
Existing access to the site was from an un-adopted residential lane and bridleway. Alternative access was sought by purchasing an existing adjacent building which will be demolished to make way for a new site entrance and gate house.
The homes will be set in ‘glades’ within the landscape with extensive and accessible landscape amenity.
The result is an enlightened proposal for a range of dwellings that respect local character and demographic and housing needs. In line with the Island’s “Eco-Isle” mandate, the project seeks to create eco-living and place-making on a site which can be enjoyed by both residents and the wider community without detriment to the environment.
There were significant challenges in preserving the wooded nature and ecology of this site which in turn provided opportunities for developing a residential scheme that had sustainable, placemaking principles at its core.
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