Locks lack magic

Building Design has reported that the plans by Aukett Fitzroy Robinson for the £450 million Eastside Locks scheme have been slammed, Cabe design review slams Aukett Fitzroy Robinson’s £450m Birmingham Eastside Locks masterplan.

Reproduced from Buidling Design (http://www.bdonline.co.uk/story.asp?sectioncode=725&storycode=3124930&c=2)

In its assessment of the scheme published this week, Cabe’s design review panel said it was “unable to see an apparent logic or a meaningful concept that has driven the site layout.”

“In the absence of a concept, the design lacks rigour and is a weak response to [the] valuable assets of the canal and the park,” the panel stated.

“Overall, the masterplan misses many vital opportunities to make this a meaningful place and requires a fundamental rethink.”

The panel said the scheme’s public realm element was its principal weakness, and questioned the need for landmark buildings at two corners of the site.

The criticism also follows images from the recent planning application for the redevelopment of the former Co-op factory on Belmont Row which suffered from an arson attack last year.

Application number
Reserved matters application for new hotel, refurbishment/re-use of former Co-Op building for class A1/2/3/4/5 and B1 (A) and (B) uses with associated internal courtyard and boundary railings/gates

Images from this planning application are shown below:

Aukett Fitzroy Robinson has hit back at the Cabe criticism and it says it has misunderstood some aspects of the design. The developers argue the focus on sustainability has been overlooked by Cabe and that the current application is in outline allowing the detailed design of the scheme to ensure an overall vision and meet the vision of all stakeholders.


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