Mark Fairhurst Architects has designed a scheme of nine residential maisonettes and flats to transform an existing garage site located north of Walthamstow town centre. The site is flanked by residential buildings, a two storey Grade II Listed former offices of the Tramway Company and a converted warehouse. The proposal provides comfortable, spacious living accommodation while delivering a design that respects and takes inspiration from characteristics within the neighbouring context.
To minimise the impact on the amenity to the existing residential buildings and gardens the massing of the building steps down from three storeys with a set-back roof storey to the front façade to two and one storeys to the rear. The reduction is massing is facilitated with the incorporation of a basement level allowing the introduction of maisonettes at ground floor. Privacy to existing residential windows overlooking the site is maintained by the use of privacy screens to terraces and obscured glazing. A first floor terrace allows internal views for a new family sized unit.
The site is enhanced with the removal of a large advertising hording currently blocking views from the converted warehouse, a two storey office building and large workshop building which was positioned hard up to the boundary with the listed building. Extensive landscaping is proposed to the front, side and rear of the building creating a new pedestrian access to the flats. New trees and shrubs enhance the setting of the adjacent listed building and along with the amenity area to the rear and an extensive green roof transforms the biodiversity for the site.
The design has been developed with dialogue with the council’s planning and design officers. The façade facing Chingford Road has been set out in line with the neighbouring buildings respecting existing parapet and ridge lines. The façade mirrors the Beaux’s Arts style of the former tram building with a symmetrical elevation divided into a tripartite arrangement. The use of durable and high quality materials such as brick, timber screens and aluminium windows will require minimal maintenance and have a long life expectancy. Overall, the design successfully transforms an incongruent industrial site into a well-integrated contemporary residential building enhancing the surrounding residential neighbourhood.