The Community Chooses
Alex Lifschutz (Lifschutz Davidson)


Alex Lifschutz

©Lifschutz Davidson



Aerial View Of Existing Buildings On The Site: Oxo Tower To Left, National Theatre To Far Right, IBM & LWT In Between

©Lifschutz Davidson

The project that I'm going to describe is called Site D. It's one of a number of different sites owned by an organisation called the Coin Street Community Builders in a 13 acre plot on the south bank of the river. And it's an area that's heavily charged with history, it's the scene of a number of planning enquiries; the local residents fought a number of battles, two public enquiries to prevent offices being built on these 13 acres. And eventually they acquired the land from the GLC - at the moment that the GLC was disbanded - and they then set about developing the area. They provided first of all a park on what had once been derelict ground, and they then wished to develop the rest of the area for housing. The area has had a declining population of residents, and by the time we were involved, in about 1991, there were only about 5,000 people living there. There were around forty or fifty thousand people working there in very prestigious organisations like Shell, like LWT, IBM and so on. And those two were the main ingredients of population. There was also the arts complexes, the Festival Hall and the National Theatre. So it's a very interesting area in terms of its mix. The site we were given was a long thin site. It's actually a wonderful site because on one side there's a park, quite green as you can see, and on the other side a terrace of warehouse buildings four or five storeys high.

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