Carlyle Group to submit plans for new South Bank urban quarter
Alternative investment manager The Carlyle Group intends to submit a planning application for a major residential and office led mixed-use regeneration project to create a new urban town centre on the south of the River Thames between the South Bank and Bankside.
This landmark development would mark a significant step forward in the ongoing renaissance of this part of Southwark by providing a destination neighbourhood with 492 new homes for those working in the area and the City.
It will also almost double the number of permanent jobs in the area to over 3,700 and deliver 35,000 sq ft of new public open spaces, 25,000 sq ft of retail and 18,500 sq ft for cultural use. In addition, over 750 construction jobs will be created during the construction phase.
The site has been identified as an Opportunity Area in the Mayor of London’s London Plan and The Carlyle Group believes that, by developing both sites either side of the railway viaduct, its proposals provide a once in a lifetime opportunity to remove the highly impermeable and overbearing barrier created by the current structures and create a new, thriving and sustainable riverside quarter with much improved employment and retail facilities.
The new urban quarter, which has been designed by PLP Architecture, will comprise nine new buildings of between five and 48 storeys in height and open up the arches under the railway viaduct to create pedestrian access and additional cultural, retail and restaurant space to breathe new life into the street frontages, while retaining the character of historic streets such as Hopton Street.
The scheme proposes the creation of 35,000 sq ft of new public space including a central square, new gardens and children’s areas, as well as the planting of over 60 trees. Furthermore, it connects with adjacent open areas and links the South Bank cultural facilities with the Tate Modern and Borough Market.
The development will comprise 1,400,000 sq ft of total floorspace, including 940,000 sq ft of residential, 450,000 sq ft of new offices, 25,000 sq ft of retail and 18,500 sq ft of cultural space, including a cultural pavilion on the river’s edge. Three of the new buildings will be on the western side of the site, where the current Ludgate House office stands, with the remaining six constructed on the eastern location where the Sampson House block currently stands. Residential buildings will be positioned towards the north end of the site to capitalise on the riverside location and spectacular views of London, whilst office buildings will be located on the southern edge. The offices will offer space arranged over flexible floorplates from 2,500 sq ft – 13,500 sq ft in size, to suit a wide range of business from multi-national organisations to local firms. All buildings will be built to the highest levels of sustainability and energy efficiency.
At 48 storeys the tallest tower will stand opposite the proposed One Blackfriars development to form a new physical Gateway, on the south side of Blackfriars Bridge, connecting the City and Southwark. Furthermore, the project will improve the footpath along the River Thames and re-open parts of the Upper Ground thoroughfare for the first time in 150 years. The design will help to create much stronger pedestrian links between Bankside and the Tate Modern and the rest of the South Bank’s Cultural Quarter, while achieving the key aim of establishing a porous urban layout based on accessibility and lines of sight.
The project will be delivered in multiple phases which are dictated by both existing lease structures (Ludgate House in Q2 2015 and Sampson House in Q2 2018) and the desire to minimise the impact of the works on the local community. It is anticipated that works will be completed between mid-2020 and early 2023.
Mark Harris, managing director at The Carlyle Group, says: “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to truly regenerate and reinvigorate a large, important and extremely well located, but underutilised, site right on the River Thames. Our aim is to create a new and vibrant destination area through a phased, deliverable regeneration project that will deliver many new, and much needed, homes for London’s workforce, and bring thousands of jobs to the area. Carlyle is known internationally for its ability to deliver successful and high quality schemes, and is ideally placed to undertake the redevelopment in consultation with local stakeholders.”
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