Public see final £500m masterplan for Bermondsey

Admin (12 October, 2017)

Proposals include towers up to 28 storeys high and a new home for Compass School

Grosvenor’s final £500million Bermondsey masterplan includes towers up to 28 storeys high, a new home for Compass School and a ‘biscuit-themed’ playground.

The Duke of Westminster’s property company revealed its final plans during a public exhibition last week as it prepares to submit a planning application later this month.

The plans include building up to 1,350 rental homes “on a range of discounted market rents” at its site on part of the former Peek Frean biscuit factory.

The current Compass School, currently on the former Lewisham and Southwark College site on Drummond Road, would be demolished and moved into a purpose-built 600-place school elsewhere on the same site, but closer to Bermondsey station.

A large open space would be created on the biscuit factory site at the corner of Clements Road and Drummond Road, with a biscuit-themed play space and two brick warehouse-style buildings.

One building would be eight storeys and one would step from eight to fourteen storeys, featuring a crèche and family-friendly cafe at ground floor level.

A computer-generated image of part of the development

Two conjoining brick townhouses would be built, one facing onto Keeton’s Road and the other onto Drummond Road, with a mix of uses on the ground floor.

The building on Keeton’s Road would range from five to seven storeys, while the building on Drummond Road would step from seven to ten storeys.

Three buildings – ranging from eight to nineteen and 28 storeys – would be built at the centre of the biscuit factory site, joined together at the lower levels and including public spaces

The large original warehouse building on Clements Road would be retained and refurbished for cultural and community activity and office space would occupy the centre of the building’s first and second floors, with warehouse-style homes around the edges.

Two to five additional storeys would be added to the top of the building for more new homes.

A roof terrace where factory workers once enjoyed tea breaks would be recreated for public and resident access.

A triangular-shaped brick building, between twelve and fifteen storeys, at the junction of Clements Road and St James’s Road would house fitness and leisure facilities at ground floor and office space on the lower floors.

Another triangular-shaped thirteen-storey residential building would be built at the Southwark Park Road and Drummond Road junction.

Grosvenor proposes to create two new routes under the railway arches through to The Blue on Southwark Park Road to link the neighbourhood together and a pedestrian-prioritised route connecting Bermondsey Station to the biscuit factory and The Blue.

Network Rail also plans to complete a major refurbishment of railway arches in the area and to change them to a mix of retail, leisure, and office/light industrial use.

If delivered, the masterplan is expected to create 1,500 jobs.

Resident Marjorie Hill, who has lived in the area for decades, said she had voiced concerns over some of the designs in the past but that she was pleased with the final plans.

“I hated the design of the North Yard back in June – there were no windows and lots of concrete and it didn’t blend in but now it’s a beautiful setting,” said the 75-year-old.

“I like it because it’s layered and isn’t just a straight up tower and I like the arches and the nice plaza.”

Brian Parsons, from Bermondsey, said he had been concerned about a loss of commercial office space – but that it had been “retained and grown” in the finals plans.

However, the 46-year-old added: “I do think one of the buildings will be really high when you come through the arches on St James’ Road.”

Sebastian Kalmar, an estate agent who works in the area, said it was a “great scheme” but should have some properties for sale.

“A big thing for me as a former resident is the BID and the improvement of that Southwark Park Road area and trying to draw it back towards there,” the 28-year-old added.

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