Virtual committee approves Fairfield Homes, our major Croydon regeneration scheme
Fairfield Homes is the next part of our regeneration scheme in the heart of Croydon’s cultural quarter. This mixed use scheme will bring 421 new homes, including 69 at shared ownership, to the centre of Croydon. There will also be flexible office, retail and leisure space (and the NHS has been earmarked to occupy the largest ground floor unit). Located adjacent to the Fairfield Halls, the recently refurbished world class concert and events venue, this scheme will be at the heart of Croydon’s creative and cultural scene.
Four of the five buildings were designed by MICA Architects, comprising 343 homes. Our own practice Common Ground Architecture (CGA) has designed a single block of 78 homes. The blocks range in height from 7 to 29 storeys, and have been arranged to provide a series of interconnected spaces, with cycle parking; public realm and landscaping; and basement car parking, refuse storage and servicing and access arrangements. Work will start on site end 2020, and the first homes will complete early 2024.
The proposals have been designed with a particular focus around communal and private open spaces to create a family-friendly environment, including a number of ground floor three-bedroom duplex apartments facing a private residential courtyard garden. The proposed public realm and landscaping is structured through a series of shared public spaces, semi-private residential courtyards, communal garden spaces and private residential gardens.
Renewable energy in the form of photovoltaics is proposed and water wastage will be kept to a minimum through the incorporation of rainwater harvesting and grey water recycling. Surface water runoff will be reduced through green roofs and soft landscaping. The proposal also seeks to introduce significant new planting to increase biodiversity in landscaped areas, alongside green roofs.
The Architects’ Journal (subscription required) wrote a big article about the scheme, and there have also been pieces in Building, Building Design, Housing Today, Property Week and local titles Develop Croydon and MyLondon.
The planning permission follows the completion of Brick By Brick’s first five schemes as part of its innovative programme of development across small sites in the south London borough. Together the completed schemes comprise 129 homes, available with Help to Buy or shared ownership, and have been designed by leading architects to provide high quality and sustainable housing for Croydon. Profits from the sale of homes built by Brick By Brick are returned to the council to be spent on frontline services.
Colm Lacey, Chief Executive of Brick By Brick, said:
“Fairfield Homes is a vitally important project for Croydon and I’m delighted that we have been given the go ahead. The development will provide much needed homes, employment space and local amenities, and incorporates a variety of communal and private open spaces to make it a really lovely place to live, work and visit. Importantly, this scheme cross-funds our successful transformation of Fairfield Halls, the much-loved local cultural venue. With Croydon recently announced as London’s Borough of Culture 2023, the decision to approve Fairfield Homes is symbolic of Croydon’s ongoing resurgence. This project is a great example of a mixed-use town centre development which genuinely benefits local people.”
Stuart Cade, MICA Architects Director, said:
“We are delighted to see the Fairfield Homes receiving consent and look forward to the scheme quickly moving ahead. MICA and Common Ground Architects have carefully designed and arranged the scheme to provide a rich variety of dwellings, addressing two new streets and a courtyard, offering both privacy and amenity, for communities in this extraordinary central Croydon location.”