Regeneration and Placemaking
From the famous transformations of Covent Garden, Southbank and Kings Cross, regeneration has always been an important part of the ever-evolving London landscape.
Regeneration can take many forms, from the simple rejuvenation of a rundown area, through to an effective remodel of the underlying fabric by addressing the deeper social and economic environments.
Whatever form it takes, regeneration works to greatly improve the quality of life for an area’s residents, and transforms a place into a more desirable destination. CBRE research has shown that it can also have a marked impact on local property markets, with house prices around regeneration zones increasing by 4.7% per annum over and above wider house price growth.
Placemaking is a careful consideration which is hugely important in ensuring that an area benefits wholly from regeneration efforts. A multi-faceted approach to designing a new development brings all elements together in a cohesive and diverse environment, ensuring that an area has the appropriate balance of residential, retail, education, leisure, offices, transport and community spaces. Effective placemaking has been shown to impact positively on property prices, adding 10% to property prices compared with the wider area.
Case study: Vauxhall, Nine Elms and Battersea (VNEB)
Vauxhall, Nine Elms and Battersea (VNEB) is London’s largest and most high profile regeneration zone, and spans 561 acres of central London on the south bank of the river Thames. Over the next decade, it will become a new destination in London and fulfil its potential as a thriving residential and business district.
An additional 20,000 new homes will join the 10,000 existing households, and future improvements to the area’s transport infrastructure, along with new public spaces the Thames River Path is making VNEB an increasingly desirable place to live, work and play.
The dramatically improved public realm will provide easy access to an enlivened riverside, a new 11 acre park, neighbourhood squares and green spaces. This is in addition to the existing green space in the area which includes the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens and the 200 acre Battersea Park.
Access to the rest of central London will also be significantly improved through several infrastructure improvements which include the extension of the Northern Line and a new pedestrian and cycle bridge. This is in addition to improvements to the existing stations at Vauxhall, Battersea Park and Queenstown Road.
Cultural elements are already well established in the area, but this will be further improved with new attractions at Battersea Power Station, a new Covent Garden Market’s Food Exchange and new public art throughout the area. The railway arches are also being transformed into new food, leisure and retail spaces which will further enhance the vibrancy and desirability of VNEB.
The area will eventually become home to 30,000 new residents and 25,000 workers. With several new developments now complete, and a range of new amenities on offer, the pioneering new residents of VNEB have already moved to the area. And now big business is also moving in; last year Apple announced it will be moving its UK headquarters to Battersea Power Station. The company will take 500,000 sqft of office space across six floors at the iconic development. The new office will be the company’s largest outside of the US and will host 1,400 employees.
VNEB is at the start of its regeneration, but it’s already clear that it is becoming one of London’s most sought after locations, and is set to become one of the city’s most desirable neighbourhoods.