Cambridge Road Estate Regeneration, Kingston upon Thames

The Cambridge Road Estate (CRE) is situated within the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames - a vibrant and diverse borough, located just 12 miles from central London. The borough has a long history and strong cultural and community heritage and is set to be one of the fastest-growing areas of London.

Appointed by Cambridge Road LLP, a joint venture partnership between our long-standing client Countryside Properties PLC and the Royal Borough of Kingston, our inter-disciplinary team of town, infrastructure and environmental, and landscape planning specialists have secured a resolution to grant planning permission for the redevelopment of the Estate.

Having been involved with CRE since the tender stage in 2017, the team prepared and submitted a hybrid application comprising full details for Phase 1 of the regeneration project and outline details for Phase 2-5, successfully steering the application through the determination process. Working in partnership with the client team to shape the redevelopment throughout the tender, ballot and town planning stages, the team also provided integrated Town Planning, Environmental, Health, Equalities and Townscape & Visual Impact Assessment services.

The proposals include 2,170 new homes (452 in Phase 1) with 42% affordable housing, alongside new community and commercial floorspace, open spaces and sustainability measures, which include potential connection to the Kingston District Heating Network in the future.

RESIDENTS VOTED FOR SAFER, WARMER, GREENER HOMES AND THAT IS WHAT WE CAN NOW DELIVER. WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO CONTINUING WORKING TOGETHER WITH RESIDENTS AS WE DELIVER ON THESE AMBITIONS.

Cllr Emily Davey, Housing Portfolio Holder for Housing, Kingston Council

A holistic approach to sustainability was considered, over a wide range of areas, before deciding that refurbishing the existing buildings would not allow the site to deliver high quality, low energy homes, for a growing population. The new development makes significant improvements to how much energy is used to light, heat and cool spaces, through energy efficient building fabric and renewable energy supply. Green and bio solar roofs will be installed throughout the estate, locally sourced materials used where possible and opportunities to recycle existing fabric explored.

The importance of green space was reinforced by residents during consultation, which helped to inform its integration within the Estate. The proposals were designed to keep as many existing trees as possible, supplemented by new tree planting, whilst also ensuring locally important trees will be retained. Green space throughout the site will be increased to 36%, prioritising active travel choices including walking, cycling and inclusive access, to facilitate more sustainable travel methods for all and positively impacting the health and wellbeing of residents.

Block C – New Homes and Community Facilities

Project Details

  • 2,170 new homes, inc. 867 affordable
  • 2,935sqm of new community, retail and commercial floorspace
  • 29,689sqm publicly accessible open space 
  • 10,300sqm play space
  • Greenspace increased from 25% to 36%
  • A holistic approach to sustainability
  • Active, accessible travel routes
  • A safer community
  • Potential to connect to the Kingston Heat Network

The existing high rise tower blocks presented many concerns regarding the safety of residents, visitors and those travelling through the Estate, due to their irregular layout, and poor architectural quality, which is typical of many post war housing estates. The physical layout is also considered to be poor, with main routes badly lit and not overlooked. To overcome this, it’s been redesigned to have active frontages and animation at the ground level, improved natural surveillance and positively connecting the inside spaces, such as the community centre with the surrounding public realm. The team have also worked collaboratively with the Metropolitan Police Crime Prevention Design Advisor to incorporate their feedback into the design as it evolved.

The new 1,250sqm double height community floorspace has been prominently located within Phase 1 of the project with dual frontage between Cambridge Road and the new open space containing the multi-use games area. Consultation with the local community is due to commence on temporary community facilities and the detailed design of the community floorspace imminently. This will ensure it becomes a multi-purpose facility for everyone to enjoy, with residents continuing to be at the heart of the regeneration proposals and able to take ownership of a key space within the project.

The extensive community consultation programme resulted in a successful ballot of residents of the Cambridge Road Estate, who in March 2020 voted overwhelmingly in favour of the plans to regenerate their neighbourhood with a turnout of 86%, with 73% voting in favour of the proposed regeneration.

With planning approval now granted, construction is expected to begin in summer 2022.

To date, the team have secured planning permission for the redevelopment of four sites across Kingston, recently working on the Tolworth Tower Public Inquiry, which further builds on their excellent experience within the Borough.

WE HAVE SUPPORTED THE CLIENT TEAM SINCE THE TENDER STAGE IN 2017, BALLOT AND TOWN PLANNING STAGES AND ARE DELIGHTED TO HAVE SUCCESSFUL SECURED APPROVAL FOR TRANSFORMATION OF THE EXISTING ESTATE INTO A NEW HIGH-QUALITY COMMUNITY, WHICH IS LIFE CHANGING FOR LOCAL RESIDENTS AND THE AREA AS A WHOLE. WE LOOK FORWARD TO WORKING WITH THEM TO SECURE STAGE 2 APPROVAL FROM THE MAYOR OF LONDON.

Planning Director, Greg Pitt

Read more of the Cambridge Road Estate’s redevelopment story here.

Images -  Patel Taylor Architects