Award Winner for Best Housing Project of the Year
Accordia, Brooklands Avenue, Cambridge CB2 2DR
After Greenwich Millennium Village and Abode at Harlow, the next major housing project that is making people sit up and take notice is Accordia, the new name for the 24-acre (9.6-hectare) site in Brooklands Avenue, Cambridge, that is being developed by Countryside Properties with an £80-million scheme for 382 houses and apartments, including 114 affordable homes.
The former Government Offices site had for years been regarded as an eyesore, with 50-year-old yellow prefabs containing offices for the Inland Revenue, DEFRA and driving test examiners, but also hiding a Cold War underground bunker. Now these blots on the landscape are being replaced by a high-quality high-density mixed-use development including smart new Government offices designed by Carey Jones Architects, and innovative contemporary housing.
Feilden Clegg Bradley were appointed as master planners and also as the architects for about two-thirds of the housing, which will range from one-bedroom apartments to five-bedroom houses. To increase the variety of the development, they brought in two other practices: the Anglo-Dutch architectural firm Maccreanor Lavington (who have designed 76 townhouses and affordable houses and flats) and Alison Brooks Architects (who have designed 38 houses and apartments).
The basic concept provides a dense urban form set within a strong landscape of 800 existing mature trees and Hobson's Brook, a historically important watercourse that runs along one side of the site. Urban Plan is structured to allow the pedestrian to dominate.
Each dwelling had an urban-street side and also a shared-landscape side at the back, with pedestrian access only and facilities for passive and active recreation. Within their Home Zones or Living Streets, residents will be able to move freely from inside their home to green streets outside that offer both a physical and visual amenity without being disturbed by the movement of vehicles. At prices currently starting from £310,000 for a two-bedroom apartment and rising to £1.2 million for a five-bedroom house, Accordia on Brooklands Avenue is going to be an important new residential quarter for Cambridge.
Homebuilder: COUNTRYSIDE PROPERTIES PLC
Countryside House, The Drive, Brentwood, Essex CM12 3AT
Tel 01277 260000
Fax 01233 451100
Contact: Suzanne Dudding, Marketing Manager.
Master Planners and Lead Architects:
FEILDEN CLEGG BRADLEY LLP
Bath Brewery, Toll Bridge Road, Bath BA1 7DE
Tel 01225 852545
Fax 01225 852528
Contact: Mike Keys, Project Team Leader.
LISON BROOKS ARCHITECTS LIMITED
Unit 610 Highgate Studios, 53-79 Highgate Road, London NW5 1TL
Tel 020 7267 9777
Fax 020 7267 9772
Contact: Alison Brooks, Director.
A2 Fourth Floor Linton House, 39-51 Highgate Road, London NW5 1RT
Tel 020 7482 5222
Fax 020 7267 2836
Contact: Richard Lavington, Partner.