This place-making framework for the Vauxhall Nine Elms Battersea (VNEB) regeneration area in central London looks forward to how the area is likely to evolve as developments are completed. The 227ha site is part of an Opportunity Area governed by an adopted 2012 Opportunity Area Planning Framework set to deliver 25,000 new jobs and 20,000 new homes, however the area is strongly divided by existing infrastructure and ongoing construction sites that currently restrict permeability.
The brief included substantial community engagement to understand what neighbourhoods currently exist in the area and how new neighbourhoods could successfully emerge as residential developments are completed. Our engagement approach (supported by Sustrans) was proactive, meeting with residents, community groups and users of the area while highlighting potential synergies and actors who could support successful delivery of the proposed projects. Activities included: a stakeholder working group around co-design; a ‘young persons’ working group to improve representation; cognitive mapping workshops; site walkabouts with community organisations; photography workshops with young people; and, co-design workshops to consider and shape the neighbourhood through interactive activities.
A new concept of neighbourhoods was developed with a focus on the major edges, hubs and routes that help anchor particular areas still in transition, allowing for community use and behaviour to emerge more organically. This was supported by a detailed project bank showing potential improvements to public realm, walking, cycling, landscaping and material choices.
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