former winter gardens in bournemouth submitted for planning
03 October 2017
The underutilised former Winter Gardens site in the heart of Bournemouth’s town centre have plans for rejuvenation by the Bournemouth Development Company (BDC), a joint venture between Morgan Sindall Investments and Bournemouth Borough Council, with the planning application submitted in September 2017. The mixed-use scheme will be the largest of its kind in the Bournemouth’s history, and will include new restaurants, retail, new public spaces, a dedicated leisure space, as well as 352 residential apartments.
The public realm design responds to the
Council’s vision for the creation of the “Grand Garden Walk” for the town: a
circular route that connects the historic Lower Gardens to the Pier Approach
and Central Square. The built form was set back to enliven the street frontage
to create outdoor dining spaces that spill out from restaurants. In addition,
new cycle paths and a widened pavement were proposed, whilst tackling the steep
level changes across the site.
A new public piazza is also proposed, creating clear destination between the recently completed neighbouring developments. Featuring terraced lawns, water features and seating, the public piazza will offer a multi-functional node, for day-to-day lunches to larger attractions such as the town’s annual events.
The site sits within a natural bowl with steeply-sloping and heavily treed banks to the north, west and southern sides. The majority of these mature and attractive trees are retained and worked into an extensive overall multi-level landscape scheme together with the existing Public Right of Way.
A contoured play area connects with the indoor leisure facility as well as utilises the site’s external steep level changes. Podium courtyards provide amenity space for residents, with basement parking below. A series of extensive and intensive green roofs are proposed on the upper levels of the buildings.
Working closely with Bright Space Architects, the overarching vision was to carefully sculpt four buildings in order to create significant areas of high-quality public realm, green space and private amenity space, whilst also providing a commercially-viable development that would help deliver against the Council’s ‘Town Centre Vision’. Utilising fabrik’s skills of landscape design, landscape policy, urban design and townscape and landscape visual analysis, landscape proposals were developed to blend into the architectural built form, and equally, into the surrounding urban context.
The design team have been working on the Winter Gardens proposals for the last two years with significant dialogue and input from the Planning Authority, Bournemouth Design Panel, LPA and CABE (Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment) approved facilitators and feedback received following a public consultation at the neighbouring Hilton Hotel.
Lead architects were Bright Space Architects and planning consultants were Savills Planning.