Levitt Bernstein wins Islington Housing competition
Levitt Bernstein has won the Islington Housing Design Competition, beating finalists Avanti Architects and Brady Mallalieu.
Fifty-nine practices entered the open competition to find a new exemplary architectural design for affordable, sustainable, spacious and high-quality family housing.
Islington Council, which ran the competition, hopes the winner will become as emblematic of Islington as its Georgian town houses.
Almost 60 teams entered the contest in late 2009, which was met with early criticism from architects who said the brief asked for too much work in return for just a small fee.
Levitt Bernstein won with its ‘Homesown’ scheme. The judges praised its “stimulating and engaging” design, which will provide flexible homes for families and encourage a “grow your own food” ethos in central London.
The firm’s submission included proposals for spacious family homes equipped with private and communal outdoor space, herb gardens and fruit trees. The design also featured green roofs, photo-voltaic panels and rainwater harvesting along with elements to discourage anti-social behaviour.
The first site to be developed with the new housing type will be Vaudeville Court, a small infill plot in a built-up part of Finsbury Park. The council intends to replicate it in other parts of the borough and hopes it will be picked up elsewhere in London.
Eamon McGoldrick, chief executive of Homes for Islington, said: “We’re looking forward to building this scheme as it will enable us to demonstrate a new, innovative approach to family housing.”
Levitt Bernstein has been appointed to work with Homes for Islington to develop the scheme from concept design to planning application which is due to be submitted by the end of the year.