101 on Cleveland replaces a rundown building in the heart of Fitzrovia with a new contextually-designed development of 103 new homes inspired by the eclectic character and built rhythm of the urban area.
The resulting three-building approach, designed by Assael Architecture, opens the site up to light permeability and views across the site, and created the opportunity for two external podium gardens.
Landscape design concept
The landscape design was developed to complement the architecture and materiality of the building and to respond to the Westminster Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP), which states:
“the mosaic of private gardens and squares in Westminster has considerable potential to support biodiversity.”
The following principles were established to enable 101 on Cleveland to contribute and enhance this ‘mosaic’ by plugging in high-quality green space to the dense urban landscape:
- Create two podium gardens between the three buildings to provide residents’ amenity, creating a rare retreat from city life in the centre of London
- Create a variety of spaces for a range of activities and play whilst promoting biodiversity
- Provide biodiverse green roofs to encourage and support locally important species of bats, birds and invertebrates, and reduce surface water
- Improve the public realm and streetscape with new planting and enhanced natural surveillance to create a safer place for the wider community
- Provide private amenity spaces to all homes, including balconies, roof terraces to the top floor apartments, and private terraces at podium level
The three buildings are connected at first floor by two external landscaped podium gardens, which enhance local green infrastructure and provide both residents’ amenity and habitat for wildlife and biodiversity.
The design of these external gardens focuses on the creation of usable space and connections with nature, including lawns and elevated decking platforms for community events, socialising or exercising; informal playspace; and introspective spaces for quiet contemplation, reading and studying, which includes benches within private reading nook hedges and fragrant, textured planting.
Improving the streetscape
As a triangular island site bound by streets on all three sides, introducing an active frontage and improved public realm was critical to the design. Existing trees have been preserved where possible, and additional trees have been planted to provide greenery and enhance the streetscene. To the south of the site, at the apex of the building, public artwork contributes to the enhanced public realm, below which a new ‘community garden’ includes a variety of plants donated from neighbours of the adjacent Holcroft Court.
Biodiversity and sustainability
Biodiversity and sustainability considerations are incorporated throughout the development, including discreet habitat features such as bird boxes and bug hotels, and an intensive green roof that comprises a rich biodiverse and seasonal planting palette whilst also contributing to climate change adaptation by reducing surface water run-off and by improving building insulation and urban greening.