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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
As planning seems to be such a contentious issue on this forum and the subject of much derision and debate we thought it would be an interesting idea to post a live application on this forum so people here can see how the process works from submission to final decision. Below you will find an application submitted by us yesterday to the council for a medium size development in a relatively run down area on the fringe of Sheffield city centre. I will post developments as and when they occur throughout the planning process of this application so people can see what the planners will require of us, how we respond etc. Feel free to comment on the design, its suitability for this location or any other comments you may wish make. In general the scheme will replace the existing Blundells building on Morpeth Street in the St Vincent’s/Well Meadows quarter of the city. We are proposing to build a number of key worker/affordable units in 2 buildings with a raised landscaped courtyard between them. Our client is happy for us to post the information here as it will all be available to the public once this becomes validated anyway.



MORPETH ST, SHEFFIELD:

The development consists of:

• 2No. Apartments blocks:
Block One- 40 studio and 1 bed Apartments
Block Two- 12 studio and 1 bed Apartments and 51.4M sq Office Unit
• 17 Under-croft parking spaces inc 1 disabled
• 1 landscaped external courtyard area
• Bins Store
• Bicycle parking

The site has an area of approximately 912 square metres.

The boundaries are:

to the North East Meadow St
to the North West Shell service station
to the South East 2 storey works
to the South West Morpeth St

There are a number of excellent properties in the neighbourhood and a few examples of poor ‘industrial’ architecture.

The site is located within a conservation area.



Built Form:

The buildings will be 4 and 6 storeys in line with similar developments in the area. The buildings provide vistas ‘within’ the site and the views onto the site from farther a field will prove interesting due to the design and layout of the site. A modern approach has been used to provide a bright and contemporary feel to the site to contrast with the dark red brickwork of some of the buildings around. The area as a whole has a mixture of brick, stone, rendered and metallic developments and it is anticipated that the sharp rendered crisp forms of these apartments will deliver a significant and quality addition to this theme. Overall the new buildings will be significant interventions in to the historic area but are of contemporary design which respects the character of the area and their context.



Site Plan:





Lower and Upper Ground Plans:







Elevations:






Existing Site Photo:




Visuals:



The above view illustrates the internal courtyard linking the 2 blocks looking towards the courtyard elevation of Block 1. Timber panelling has been incorporated along the lower 3 stories to “soften” the impact of the building on the courtyard and offer a pleasing contrast with the crisp white render used extensively throughout the rest of the scheme. All apartments overlooking the courtyard have balconies with associated privacy screens and the upper 2 floors are set back to add interest and articulation to the design and massing of the block and the overall scheme. Contrasting coloured render panels have been added behind the privacy screens to introduce an additional “signature” colour into the courtyard environment. Please note that the courtyard landscaping is indicative at this moment and subject to further design review.





The above view illustrates the modern imposition of Block one in the street scene along Morpeth Street. The ground floor level has polished black concrete block work to provide an easily cleanable surface should any damage / vandalism occur. The white rendered panels offer a bright and attractive contrast to the red brickwork of the area. The slightly projecting gun metal grey projection is used to create visual interest on the street scene and is punctuated by full height floor to ceiling windows that afford good views and attractive, light filled living spaces for residents.




The above view illustrates the massing of the proposed scheme within its immediate urban environment. The contextual map is courtesy of Z-map which uses highly advanced satellite imagery technology to accurately map out and provide detailed 3D models of existing urban environments. The map however is limited in its coverage and does not include the newer developments of a similar scale and height both proposed and under construction which are sited further up the hill towards the university roundabout.

Overview:

The St Vincent’s/Well Meadows quarter is a unique piece of Sheffield’s architectural heritage and is characterised by some excellent examples of period industrial architecture. The area contains some of the most interesting examples of industrial buildings in the City but the new proposals aim to add to the integrity of the area by replacing poor quality buildings with good examples of modern architecture.
The proposed redevelopment makes a very significant positive contribution to the area by the removal of unappealing buildings, and the creation of respectful and contextual buildings. The buildings will achieve a high quality of design and materials whilst being appropriately massed and scaled to strike a good balance with its neighbours. The modern interventions deliberately avoid pastiche and utilize a contemporary design which enhances the historic identity of an important area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It is fairly recent yes, Blundells will relocate to other premises once this goes ahead.
 

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I like this too. I'm looking forward to watching the updates too. Cheers for this Larven, it should be quite informative.
 

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Thanks Larven - great idea. First designs look cool to me. The car parking is well incorporated in comparison to the 'dead' ground floor on some of the newer developments - e.g. Wards phase 1. Good luck with the white render (after your previous project in the Well Meadow Conservation Area). The courtyard terrace needs a bit of working up, but apart from that the building looks ready to go! Planners shmanners. :shifty:
 

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I agree, great idea!

I think that the height and mass of this (small) scheme are just right for the area. I really like the look and finish of the building on the SW/NE views but as a planner I might be concerned about the completely blank walls facing SE/NW, though not enough to turn it down. Does the internal layout not suit additonal windows on the SE/NW flanks?

17 parking spaces for 52 units- is this just an accpetable ratio for the planners or because there's no room for any more?
 

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I think the NW elevation looks into the Shell garage? That may be why there are no windows- I wouldn't want to look at the garage, and I don't think it will be moving in a hurry? However they would a nice sunset view about this time of the year. I think getting as much light and sun into flats is very important in terms of the end user (i.e. the owner/renter). It is probably less important in terms of planning? I know I enjoy my West facing flat as it gets good amounts of light and a good sunset over Crookes/Walkley.

I do agree thought that the NW and SE elevations do look very plain, a haven't thought of any ideas to assist this though. Being an Engineer i'm more function than aesthetics in terms of ideas!

Larven- Just out of interest do you do your own transport assessments?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Have you got the floor plans yet?
Of course...I have posted the Lower and Upper Ground floor apartment plans in my initial post, basically the residential stacks up on the upper floors as shown on the upper ground floor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
17 parking spaces for 52 units- is this just an accpetable ratio for the planners or because there's no room for any more?
This scheme is intended to provide key worker and affordable units, providing 1 for 1 car parking is not a priority as the site enjoys excellent public transport links with the supertram and numerous bus services right on the doorstep, the city centre is also 5-10 mins walk away.



I do agree thought that the NW and SE elevations do look very plain, a haven't thought of any ideas to assist this though. Being an Engineer i'm more function than aesthetics in terms of ideas!
A good point and one I should have addressed earlier. The side elevations have been deliberately left blank so they do not sterilize the neighbouring sites for any potential development in the future. If we put windows on these elevations any future development could be severely compromised as they would have to take account of the relevant overlooking distances. This would mean any future building footprint would have to be a minimum of 11 metres from our building. You can see how we've done this on the Fitzwilliam Street apartments where the elevation facing West One has been left blank, eventually a similar sized building will be built next door and obscure this elevation from view.

Larven- Just out of interest do you do your own transport assessments?
It depends on the level of detail required, for larger schemes we generally commission these reports from professional consultants.
 

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This scheme is intended to provide key worker and affordable units, providing 1 for 1 car parking is not a priority as the site enjoys excellent public transport links with the supertram and numerous bus services right on the doorstep, the city centre is also 5-10 mins walk away.

Fair points though I always think that planning policy is in cloud cuckoo land when comes to car ownership; I can count the number of adults of working age who I know and who don't own or live in a household with use of a car on one hand. obviously everyone ends up cramming up the streets with parking. we'll not surrender our love of the car until we're forced to, and Im no exception! :eek:hno:
 

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Fair points though I always think that planning policy is in cloud cuckoo land when comes to car ownership; I can count the number of adults of working age who I know and who don't own or live in a household with use of a car on one hand. obviously everyone ends up cramming up the streets with parking. we'll not surrender our love of the car until we're forced to, and Im no exception! :eek:hno:
Local parking policy standards might be realistic if public transport provision was up to scratch, which it is not.

Taking a typical Barratt suburban development as an example - do the sales people ever tell you what's going on beyond their parcel of land and how often do they drop into the conversation "ooh there's a bus stop 70 metres from your house which runs every 10 mins into town".

Do they ****. Local planning authorities can agree public transport contributions by S106 and the like, but at the end of the day, property developers are failing to sell anything other than houses. Sustainable communities my arse.
 

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"Larven-As planning seems to be such a contentious issue on this forum and the subject of much derision and debate we thought it would be an interesting idea to post a live application on this forum so people here can see how the process works from submission to final decision"

This looks interesting so i thought i would "resurect it"
Q - is it still an active project?

Would the building not be suitable for offsite construction
as, the Unity, because the layot is very compact and regular.
RC or Steel @ podium for car park then boxes on top or build frame from cold rolled steel.
Surprised at lift in both blocks as £25k a time 3 storey yes 2storey ?

Parking bays very tight as no room to turn into end bays, ok for smart car or mini drivers.
Visability from entrance for cars with wing walls to main Entrance?
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
This application has not yet been validated as there are outstanding pieces of information such as a noise report still to be submitted. However initial reports suggest that the planning department has concerns about the height and wants it to be red brick.....now theres a surprise! If this is supported by Urban Design and we are to be led down the route of knocking a floor(s) off and changing the material to red brick the client will withdraw the application. Without wanting to go into too much detail that is the current position....I will keep you updated.
 
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