AVON WAY, COLCHESTER
Landscape Cost: Approx. £300k
RIBA Stages: 2 to 6
GUARDA produced an illustrative masterplan for an extension to an existing student village. It has since acheived planning permission and will we are now completing the detailed landscape package to discharge conditions and construction stage.
The site consists of central square, activity hub and a series of streets and gardens throughout the village. During pre-application discussions it became clear that the LPA required a ‘green link’ to run between the existing The Chase and Salary Brook Nature
Reserve and although this contradicted the need for car parking within this area we created a series of lawns which were reinforced grass areas for overspill car parking. A central square then formed a focus at the entrance to the main building.
The activity hub spills out into a landscaped area which also reflected the diverse needs of the students – providing areas of activity, gatherings, outdoor cinema and quite seating.
Sweeps of robust, architectural planting run through the village, binding the buildings together and creating attractive walks and spaces.
Management of the boundary hedgerows and trees were considered, with support from the arboriculturist, and access to the main university footpath route was improved through the introduction of lighting and passive surveillance.
Coordination with the other disciplines was paramount as it was a very challenging programme. A series of meetings and workshops with the client, architect and civil engineers were undertaken to derive high quality and practical solution. We also spent time with the site staff to ensure that we understood their day-to-day needs and requirements.