The transformation of the Colosseum Retail Park, an underused retail park in north Enfield, into a new truly mixed-use neighbourhood is set to go ahead after Enfield Councillors gave a resolution to grant consent to plans for a new mixed-use development of up to 1800 homes brought forward by Rolfe Judd Architecture on behalf of NEAT Developments and BlackRock Real Assets.
The 10-acre site will create a new residential and commercial quarter supporting links between east and west Enfield. The proposals will bring up to 1,800 homes and other uses set within a well-defined framework of accessible public space featuring a reinterpretation of London streets and park spaces, designed to provide amenity for residents and the local community alike.
Brought forward as a hybrid planning application, the detailed application for Phase 1 of the development will realise 444 homes, workhub, crèche and small retail units set around The Heart, a generous landscaped plaza which features areas for play and relaxation, and will become the focus of the new community. The Heart will also become the focal point for connections to the surrounding area, establishing thoroughfares and links between the site and existing communities to the east and west.
Later phases of the development have been organised as a series of building blocks, creating east-west and north-south permeability through the proposal, many with landscaped podium courtyards envisaged as quiet, introspective retreats away from the public realm. The elevation lines along these blocks are broken up into smaller facades. The individual facades that make up each block are pulled up and pushed down creating further variety in scale and mass and reinforcing the idea that each block is a townscape in miniature.
Evolving over 700 years, Enfield Town has established a rich vernacular of architectural depth and a layering of styles, seldom found in many other established areas within London. Buildings of different ages and styles frequently appear to overlap and intersect creating a rich interplay of shapes and volumes.
The proposal has been inspired by these principles and seeks to emulate this character through this layered approach and a rich, variable architectural character.
Four distinct typologies, with varying heights, roof types and window modulation, have been developed by the architectural team which give a broad reflection of the wide variety of shapes and forms which have come to shape Enfield Town.When layered using a condensed palette of brickwork and shiplap timber, found in many of the more historic buildings in the Town Centre, it achieves a character of a place that has grown slowly over time, layer upon layer.
Enfield Council’s planning officers recommended the scheme for approval, stating that:
“The proposed massing strategy based on a ‘family’ of building typologies with their different scales, features, articulation and rooflines and the use of a common palette of materials, should create a varied and distinctive character”.
The new development seeks to promote design that is contemporary, innovative and original, learning from its neighbours by complementing rather than imitating the existing vernacular. This new community will be complementary to Enfield Town, supporting but not competing with it, linking East and West Enfield by providing a highly desirable place to live and work, and it is hoped that this new neighbourhood will act as a catalyst for the regeneration of this under-utilised area.
For further information see our Colosseum Retail Park project page.
2nd October 2020