Watermill Lane

Watermill Lane, Edmonton, London

Included in Inside Housing Top 50 Developments 2013
Shortlisted for Best Affordable Housing Sunday Times New Homes Awards 2013
This is a flagship £25m urban regeneration residential scheme of an Origin Housing site next to the North Middlesex Hospital in Edmonton, North London. The Scheme replaces the existing, mainly shared 1970’s cluster accommodation used by hospital staff.  The redevelopment contains 221 new self-contained apartments and houses built over three consecutive phases, 128 of these will be let to hospital staff with the remainder being social rent and shared ownership. The development also includes a new on-site office for Origin Housing.
The scheme represents a very contemporary solution providing architecturally exciting housing and integrated landscaping. The project promotes the idea of an urban village raising the architectural standard of the area and key features like local amenity squares form a major part of the overall masterplan.

Phase one, which completed five months ahead of schedule in November 2011, features an eight storey tower providing a landmark and focal point within the development. The tower projects “boxes” at higher levels, green roof and garden features and feature zig-zag alternating balconies. Architects PCKO set out to maximise useable amenity space with movement carefully channelled through the site, and a clear character applied to each distinct neighbourhood area.
 The complex, urban project incorporates high levels of Modern Methods of construction techniques comprising: on-situ concrete frame incorporating LGS (Light Gauge Steel), insulated render, Rain Screen Metal cladding; Pre-Fabricated and Pre-assembled bolt-on Balconies and internal metal stud and dry lining plasterboard walling.

The scheme achieved Level 4 of the Code for Sustainable Homes, in advance of that standard being required. The project uses a high level of effective Modern Methods of Construction techniques and sustainable design practices to embed energy efficiency in to the structure in addition to generating 20% of the total site energy demands through renewable energy sources such as photo-voltaic panels and central high efficiency boilers. A site specific energy strategy was developed for the key worker housing consumption during the day and for healthcare workers on day and night shift work patterns which enables the efficient employment of Combined Heat and Power (CHP). Local ecology is encouraged by the provision of green roofs and sensitive landscaping. the landscape proposals also incorporated tree protection, ecological enhancements and a co-ordinated Sustainable Urban Drainage System (SUDS) strategy. Large areas of terraces and balcony space provide ample planting areas in resident private spaces to increase potential for wider biodiversity appeal. The road system includes specially designed junctions which prioritise the pedestrian over the car. Children’s play areas incorporate the natural topography of the landscape to provide slides or climbing areas, which are safer to use and low maintenance.

The project demonstrates Origin’s expertise in delivering a complex regeneration project involving decanting of existing residents to completed homes, phased over several years.
Programming of the scheme and build measures had to reflect the implications of existing occupants working on differing live/ work shift patterns. With residents still living on site, compliance with health and safety and safe access for existing residents were paramount. To communicate effectively, Origin created newsletters and held meetings with the residents steering group. All tenants could contact a designated Tenant Liaison officer to resolve problems as they arose and Origin’s Community Development team and Neighbourhood Managers were actively involved with residents during the construction period.

Anticipated completion date:
Completed:   November 2011 - November 2013
Galliford Try
No of units:
Tenure mix:
Rented; Intermediate Rent; Shared Ownership

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