A landmark development for Plymouth
|Client||Sutton Harbour Group|
The site is in historic Sutton Harbour, the last departure point of the Mayflower and Plymouth's original port. Today, Sutton Harbour is a busy fishing port and 450 berth marina.
The Sugar Quay site has a rich planning history, the most prominent being a proposed new BBC broadcasting facility granted planning in 2006. Although construction began, it was never completed and permission eventually lapsed. In more recent years, a number of pre-application schemes have been brought forward to test the site's potential.
We wanted to deliver a design that would become a pivotal landmark on the harbourside. The site is in an area designated for tall buildings, however, our approach was not to create a single tall element, but to take a more fluid approach and have aspects of the development take height precedent from the adjacent buildings. For example, the south east corner will be raised to match the height of the Salt Quay House development to the south. From this point, the height will increase from 10 storeys to 20 storeys as the development moves north. This will minimise any overshadowing issues.
The 0.57 hectare site boasts unrestricted views of the harbour and Plymouth Sound. Our design seeks to maximise views out, so the orientation of the building has been developed in direct response to these unique vantage points. With pedestrian access possible from both Sutton Road and the path around the harbour, we have also considered improvements to the public realm in our design.
The proposal builds on the principles of the Area Action Plan in its layout and orientation. The north façade is aligned with the opposing block on Sutton Road. The ground floor commercial plinth is curved, opening up the site to the adjacent public areas, in particular to the north on the proposed boulevard. The emphasis of this boulevard creates a vista across Sutton Harbour towards St. John’s Church. The water-facing façades of the proposal feature a residential entrance and retail frontages, creating a vibrancy of activity in this area.
The mixed use scheme has been developed to maximise and enhance key features in and around the site. The layout of the programme is key in helping to achieve this. The commercial programme is located in a semi circle at ground floor, directly addressing the harbour. By placing the commercial element of the development here, this will help animate this currently inactive area of the site and drive pedestrian movement into the proposed new public space.
The layout of Sugar Quay has been designed so all public areas are overlooked with no hidden recesses, to ensure the scheme is secure by design. The plans will offer private amenity for all residents in the form of balconies and roof terraces. Alongside this will sit active ground floor frontage by the principal residential entrance and atrium, and the residential gym located on the south east corner.