A site with potential for a new build house in South London, getting planning permission will not be easy.
Coldharbour Lane, renowned for its collection of grand Villas constructed around 1844, is located within the Loughborough Conservation Area. Currently divided into flats, the property features a spacious communal garden at the rear. Our client approached us for a feasibility study to see how we could provide a concept design and apply for planning permission. Repurposing the existing garage structure at the back of the site into a modern 1-bedroom retirement home.
The history of the site reveals that the area south of Coldharbour Lane in Brixton was laid out circa 1844, likely designed by Henry Currey. This layout included several elegant standalone or paired villas. In the 1970s, Lambeth created a pleasant new park, known as Loughborough Park, which borders the area.
Previously, the client obtained planning permission to construct garages at the rear of the site, with two of them already built. Our proposal aimed to utilize the existing garage structure while expanding it to create a 1-bedroom house. We carefully considered the potential overlooking from the existing flats and ensured that the new dwelling would be visually appealing from these apartments.
Starting with the design of a typical pitched roof building, we skillfully transformed the scale, mass, and identity. To seamlessly blend with the site’s shape, address privacy concerns, and harmonize with the surrounding architecture. Our proposals involved retaining a portion of the garage structure while partially removing walls to accommodate a new extension. An extension that would meet the minimum space standards on this constrained site.
In terms of design, the new build house will feature stock brick and cedar cladding. Which are commonly found materials in the vicinity, maintaining architectural coherence with the local area. These choices not only establish a visual link but also provide screening from the adjacent apartments. Additionally, the incorporation of a green roof seamlessly integrates the structure into the garden space, enhancing the outlook for the apartments and contributing to the overall aesthetic of the Conservation Area.
Internally, we strategically designed the bedroom to have direct access to the private garden area. The dwelling includes a bathroom and an open-plan living area with level threshold access. Prioritizing privacy, maximizing natural light, and providing delightful views of the enclosed private garden. Furthermore, the property is future-proofed to cater to the needs of elderly or disabled occupants.
The new dwelling seamlessly fits within the spacious grounds of the rear garden, utilizing materials that are sensitive to the Conservation Area and the surrounding buildings. The proposed scale, form, and material palette artfully merge the dwelling into its natural surroundings, ensuring that it becomes a welcomed addition to the area.
Concept Design, Site Assessment, Feasibility Study