The opening of our Clapham Old Town Regeneration scheme was a roaring success brining the whole community together to enjoy the new space.
The project creates a new high quality tranquil urban piazza in Clapham Old Town reducing the dominance of traffic by removing the existing gyratory system, redesigning the bus stop and stand layout and reversing the percentage of road to pavement area (currently 65/35% to 35/65% ); effectively giving the area back to the pedestrian. It reclaims the public realm for public enjoyment – making an attractive space where people can meet, sit, pause or pass through. Marks Barfield Architects (MBA) – together with Armstrong Bell Landscape Design – propose the planting of up to 80 new trees providing year round interest; high quality york stone paving, free draining fine rolled gravel, and seating.
The new public space is defined by contained planting to the north and south, and has glimpses of the Common and Holy Trinity church while encouraging the visual connection to the active frontages along Clapham Common Northside. The strong line of Plane trees running along the Common side of Clapham Common North Side is continued down into the new public space to define its western edge and strengthen the link with the common. The planter at the northern end of the space is raised at one corner and contains Deschampsia grasses and multi- stemmed Amelanchier trees which filter views of the buses. The gravel area hosts a scattered plantation of Catalpa Nana trees which give shelter to numbers of individual chairs, lending an informal character to the space. The small scale of the trees reflects the domestic scale of the Polygon.
The Old Town is in the centre of historic Clapham and is at the heart of the conservation area; once home to Graham Green. The space opens up to Clapham Common to the South with its visual focus being the Holy Trinity Church – the centre of Wilberforces’s Clapham Sect in the late 18th century . The space has evolved in an ad hoc way over the last hundred years or so and has never been designed. The intensification of the area, the growth of traffic, buses and its many and disparate uses, has lead to a number of problems and conflicts which we are seeking to resolve. Also changing lifestyles mean that we are choosing to live out doors more than before.
The Clapham Old Town Regeneration Project includes.
• The creation of a new piazza in Clapham Old Town and west of The Polygon.
• The widening of footways and narrowing of carriageways in Old Town, The Pavement, Clapham Common North Side and The Polygon.
• The introduction of improved crossing points for pedestrians.
More information about the project can be found here: http://www.marksbarfield.com/#/projects/clapham-gateway/?null