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Massive Newcastle Plans From Make

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Massive Newcastle Plans From Make

Post  Mr007 on Thu Feb 24, 2011 12:54 am

Massive Newcastle Plans From Make

Published on 03-02-2011 by
Make has drawn up a massive new outline planning application for the Newcastle-upon-Tyne Science City consisting of no less than 22 new buildings.

The site, which is situated near the famous Newcastle Football Club St James' Stadium, fits in with the under construction Downing Plaza that is being built on the north-eastern corner of the site which includes Newcastle University's new business school. In addition to this work is also beginning on the old Scottish and Newcastle headquarters which are now being converted into a Sandman Signature Hotel.

The buildings featured in the project could include five new university buildings for Newcastle University, student accommodation with up to 270 flats, family houses and mews houses, and a selection of commercial office buildings from 2,000 to 11,000 square metres in size. The site is roughly divided into areas with flexible business space to the south, residential largely on the western part, and the commercial and university space on the north eastern section tying in with Downing Plaza.

It is here that the tallest building, a mere 7 storeys, will be located. Taller buildings however would offer more space and make full development of the site much harder in a commercial sense than subdividing it into shorter, less dense plots.

Furthermore, the topography of the site means that it on a hill means that the tallest buildings would be located further downhill blending in with the existing cityscape from a distance rather than creating a series of new peaks. This also means that the residential zone on the western part of the site can reduce in scale to fit in with the existing housing that bounds it.

Key to the plans are the intentions to try and green the scheme as much as possible. Not only will this be done literally with the maximum amount of green roofs, wall gardens, and green walls, but there will also be rainwater collection built into the buildings, bore hole energy, an on-site recycling centre and even new soil imported into the back gardens of the residential housing so you can grow your own veg.

Whether an ambitious plan like Science City can actually happen is another question entirely. To build it will take £255 million of investment, but the land nearest to St James' Park is already seeing infrastructure work on it, and with Downing Plaza and other nearby developments already happening, there could well be enough long-term momentum to see development here.

That said, Newcastle has a long history of ambitious and massive masterplans that have started without being completed from a Victorian rebuild of the city centre, to Basil Spence's All Saints proposals of the sixties that saw one block constructed before it was dropped. Only time will tell.
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