GPAD gets the green light for nine contemporary family homes built of a brownfield site in Croydon
12th April 2023
The site on Birchanger Road is located south of Norwood Junction station and is flanked by residential plots on the east, west and north sides, and is screened by many trees and shrubbery. The pedestrianised lane has been designed to be multifunctional allowing children across all age ranges to play and socialise with other residents on the development. The play has been integrated into the main communal garden area to encourage a community feel.
The homes provide quality internal spaces in terms of layout, scale, and volume. Mindful of light into the building, careful orientation of the houses, the creation of strategic gaps allowing natural light to flood in. The 3 bed homes each have a third-floor terrace and front and back gardens, contributing to the landscape strategy of the development.
The front façade of the nine homes twists away from the entrance to the street and the rear incorporates oriel windows, both features directing views away from neighbouring properties, establishing an intimate arrival into the homes, and ensuring privacy.
GPAD Managing Director, Charles Bettes adds “This scheme is about pushing the architecture and landscaping and being contemporary, whilst responding to the local vernacular and the constrained back land nature of the site. The form draws inspiration from the traditional with pitched roofs and twists on the bay window and brick is used by with different bonds and textures to provide interest and break down the mass. Small details like curved balustrading are introduced to provide some personality and fun to the houses.
Landscape architects Studio Bosk, builds on the existing landscape to create a vibrant and welcoming setting that aims to foster a community feel amongst the residents surrounded by mature planting. The design respects the existing matures trees which are currently living on site, by incorporating them into the landscaping.
Bettes continues “The homes are organised into three blocks that step with the level of the site and views through the site. A stepped twist incorporated into the plan looks to activate the communal landscaped areas and entrance way, whilst directing views away from neighbouring properties. These steps provide opportunities for interesting details and a variety of external spaces and greening.”
A brick façade provides a feeling of residential scale and quality with detailing to add quality, depth and interest through their textural and positive environmental qualities. Pitched mansards roofs, clad in charred timber, reflect the neighbouring homes, weather well, and add to the green qualities within the development.
A top the roofs biodiverse planting creates a variety of substrates to support a diversity of habitats and to support a mixture of plants, birds, and animals within the area.
Client: Northill Properties Ltd
Planning Consultant: MJP Planning & Hillstone
Landscape Consultant: Studio Bosk
Charles Bettes shares his thoughts on alternative routes into the profession of architecture in Building Design.
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