The previously developed site located in Hounslow Town Centre comprised two large part one/part-two storey vacant retail and warehousing buildings with associated hard-standing car parking with a very restrictive local plan designation. A2Dominion acquired the site with the objective of returning the site to a viable use and delivering high quality homes in a mix of tenures via a residential-led, mixed use regeneration scheme, which optimised the site’s potential.
John Rowan and Partners was appointed to act as planning consultants to prepare and implement a planning strategy to optimise the development of this under-utilised, low-rise site on the edge of Hounslow Town Centre. Notwithstanding the site’s identification in the Local Plan for low rise commercial-led redevelopment, it was considered that the site could deliver a high-density homes-led regeneration.
The site formed part of a wider site allocation for leisure and commercial uses at ground floor, and 55 residential units at upper floors in buildings ranging from three to four storeys. With an adopted site allocation in place, the key planning policy issue to address was scale and massing
The Planning Consultancy team would lead pre-application discussions with the Council; lead the project and design team; scope and coordinate the preparation, production and submission of relevant documentation; and lead negotiations with the Council.
Detailed analysis of the site and its role -and potential- in supporting the viability of the town centre was undertaken. Key elements included the ability to “extend” the town centre functions; legibility from public transport interchanges; and traffic improvements. By seeking to address these through the site’s redevelopment, the Planning Consultancy team successfully negotiated a significant increase in height and massing on the site. The Council’s objectives for housing delivery would be supported through high quality mixed tenure housing delivering 165 new homes; two slender towers would provide landmarkers to the entrance to the town center, ensuring high visibility; and public realm improvements including pavements and new bus stops would enhance and support the town Centre’s overall viability.
The Planning Consultancy team proactively engaged with local stakeholders, Council officers and the local community throughout the planning process and a public consultation was carried out prior to the submission of the application with significant public support for the proposal being provided.
The proposal, which tripled the number of homes and heights from the Local Plan site allocation, was approved in September 2015.