Friday, 29 April 2016

TV Centre Phase Two - Good News or Bad News?

Proposed townhouses on Frithville Gardens. Nasty or nice?
On wednesday Stanhope, the developers of TV Centre, hosted a "public drop-in" to view plans for Phase Two of their site, currently under construction on Wood Lane.

On display were detailed plans for the proposed townhouses at the rear of Frithville Gardens, and also the new flats and shops which will replace the existing multi-storey car park site on Wood Lane.

So, how do the plans look? Should us local residents welcome the new designs, or should we urge the developers to go back to the drawing board?

Why are Stanhope consulting with local residents? 
Stanhope are keen to have good relations with the local community as the massive new redevelopment of TV Centre gets under way, with Phase 1 due for completion in 2018, and Phase Two due to begin soon.

Macfarlane Rd, old (right) and new (left). 
What was on display?
On display were the precise details of Phase Two, including the townhouses at the rear of Frithville Gardens (top) and also the flats and shops on the multi-storey car park site on Wood Lane (right and below).

How do the plans look?
That of course rather depends on your taste in architecture. The flats on Macfarlane Rd and Wood Lane, which will replace the current car park, look rather stylish (see above), and the new build seems to fit pretty well with the existing character of the neighbourhood.

Walk down the street and turn left onto Wood Lane, and you will find a whole new street opening up. Macfarlane Place (below) is a new pedestrian-only street which will cut through the soon-to-be-demolished car park and will provide pedestrians with better access to Hammersmith Park.

Macfarlane Place - a new street - viewed from Wood Lane.
The image on the right shows the view from Wood Lane, looking down Macfarlane Place and allowing pedestrians to walk under the arches of the Hammersmith and City line into the park.

If you can't quite get your head around it, that isn't surprising, as Macfarlane Place doesn't exist yet. It's a new street, currently occupied by the existing car park.

One of the best things about this design is the new shops at ground level, which will open up Wood Lane to foot traffic.

Proposed shops and cafes
By adding retail space at street level, Stanhope aims to make the area much more inviting for pedestrians. The new development will also join up with the new public park, which is part of the overall plan for Wood Lane and the northern extension of Westfield, and aims to make the whole area more pedestrian-friendly.

Less successful perhaps are the townhouses, which have a rather 1960s new town feel, and don't really fit in to our neighbourhood especially well.

Proposed townhouses
After all, when it comes to townhouses, this is really just a fancy way of saying a terraced street - of which we have an abundance in Shepherd's Bush. The Georgians, Victorians and Edwardians all built terraces - why not build something similar? Why re-invent the wheel?

What will TV Centre look like?
To see a digital "fly-through" of TV Centre, watch the seven minute video below, which gives you realistic 3D renders of most of the views of the new buildings.

When will Phase 2 Begin?
This has not been decided yet - as it is still subject to planning approval from LBHF.

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