Fosters gets OK for Queensway proposals | New
Foster & Partners have been given the green light to replace a series of 1950s shops and apartments in west London with two seven-storey buildings comprising a mix of shops, offices and new homes.
The firm’s Queensway Parade development in Bayswater will be directly opposite its £1billion redevelopment of former Grade II listed Whiteley’s department storewhich transforms the building into a residential and hotel program.
Queensway Parade, for client MB (QW) Guernsey Ltd, will deliver a 10,978m² office building on the southernmost part of the 0.4ha site, at the junction of Queensway and Porchester Gardens.
Immediately to the north will be a residential block of 32 units, 35% of which are intended to be “affordable”. There are currently 27 apartments on the site.
The program will also provide 11 new stores, but the total floor area for retail and restaurants will shrink by more than a third to 2,216 m² according to plans.
A report to members of Westminster City Council’s planning committee acknowledged the reduction in retail space, but said the proposed new shops and restaurants would be of ‘better quality’ than those currently on the site and have a stepless access.
They also acknowledged local concerns over the potential loss of a post office at the site.
Tuesday’s meeting report says an initial round of consultations on the proposals received six letters of objection and three letters of support, with concerns centering on the height and footprint of the new buildings and their impact on the Queensway Conservation Area.
A second round of consultation after seven additional “affordable” homes were brought into the project and changes were made to the massing and massing of the proposals drew four letters of support and three letters of objection.
Recommending the plan for approval, the planning officers said there were no design objections to the demolition of the existing 1950 building, but they accepted that the height and massing of the office block would remain a key consideration.
They said the proposals would cause ‘less than substantial damage’ to the Queensway Conservation Area and the setting of the Bayswater and Hallfield Estate Conservation Areas, as well as the setting of the Grade II listed terraces on Inverness Terrace.
Officers added that the proposals would also result in “significant loss of light and an increased sense of confinement” for occupants of nearby Aird House and Cervantes Court.
“The applicant modified the design to incorporate further setbacks to the upper two floors of the office building and recessed elements to the rear facade of the office and residential buildings,” they said.
“However, a position has now been reached where the claimant indicates that any further revision will render the scheme unviable. Therefore, this revised application is determined as is.
Agents praised the quality of Fosters’ proposals and said that, overall, councilors should approve them.
“As architectural compositions in their own right, each building is very well designed, limited only by the bulk of their upper two stories which, from certain angles, and certainly from elevated positions, would be somewhat heavy,” they wrote. declared.
“The shaped moldings of the office building’s precast stone columns and beams would add a simple element of enrichment to the building. Coupled with good detailing on the ironwork of the windows, aprons and, where applicable, railings, the building should be interesting without being too “noisy”.
Members of Westminster’s planning committee approved the plans, with conditions.