HTA and FBM also in running to create new homes on city-council car park site next to grade I-listed church
Bristol City Council-owned Goram Homes has shortlisted four design teams in a competition to redevelop a city-centre car park in the shadow of a grade I-listed church into an “inspiring and inclusive” housing development.
Groupwork with McGregor Coxall & Hydrock; Levitt Bernstein; FBM Architects and HTA Design have been chosen to enter the second stage of the competition process to create new homes on the 0.32ha site of Portwall Lane car park, on Redcliffe Way.
The site, which is north of the gothic St Mary Redcliffe Church, has been earmarked for redevelopment for more than a decade. Goram Homes’ design competition for the scheme was launched in March in conjunction with Redcliffe Residents’ Action Group and Neighbourhood Forum and Bristol Festival of Housing.
The competition brief sought proposals for the surface car park to be redeveloped with a mixed-use, residential-led scheme that would “enhance and fit well with the long-term vision for the area”. It cited the nearby Wapping Wharf mixed use development, by Alec French Architects, as a guide for entrants.
Practices were told that proposals for the Redcliffe Way scheme should have an “activated ground floor” with commercial and community space, public open space, and a minimum of 40% affordable housing. Goram Homes also stated its ambition for the project to be “an exemplar of sustainability and biodiversity”. Competition entrants were not given a target level of new homes for the scheme, however Goram’s business plan identifies the site as suitable for 110 units.
Shortlisted entries were chosen by a panel of judges that included members of Redcliffe Way Neighbourhood Forum.
The teams will now move on to the second stage of the competition, with community engagement and further development of their ideas. A winning team is expected to be chosen by the end of summer.
Goram Homes managing director Stephen Baker said the company was “committed” to working with communities in Bristol to ensure that its developments met local needs and complemented existing neighbourhoods.
“This design competition was a fantastic opportunity for us to do just that and to support the Redcliffe Neighbourhood Forum in realising a long-held ambition to regenerate this area,” he said.
Levitt Bernstein said its proposals drew on the forms, proportions and elements of St Mary Redcliffe, creating a unique design “cognisant of the location and local heritage” that would also showcase zero-carbon design by using Passivhaus standards.
FBM Architects said its proposal aimed to integrate north and south Redcliffe to create a community of dual aspect, low energy dwellings that related to St Mary Redcliffe and the wider context. The practice said its arrangement created a series of vennels and courtyards orientated towards the church, that referenced the historic urban grain and helped activate the public realm and wider connections to Temple Meads Station and Harbourside.
HTA said its plans had been designed to create a “hierarchy of spaces provided from private balconies to communal courtyards and roof terraces” with Redcliffe Square at its heart, in a scheme that reinstated the importance of St Mary Redcliffe into the fabric of the city.
Landscape architect McGregor Coxall said the proposals it had developed with Groupwork and Bristol-headquartered Hydrock were a “parkland vision” for Redcliffe Way.