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Architects Reveal Designs for Grenfell Overhaul

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

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Six practices working in conjunction with residents of Lancaster West Estate—the location of London's Grenfell Tower fire that claimed 70 lives this past June—have started putting together ideas for estate improvements; among these are proposals for solar panel roofs and new gardens.

ChiralJon, CC-SA-BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Six practices working in conjunction with residents of Lancaster West Estate—the location of the Grenfell Tower fire that claimed 70 lives this past June—have started putting together ideas for estate improvements; among these are proposals for solar panel roofs and new gardens.

The team was announced in early March, and includes Adjaye Associates, Levitt Bernstein, Maccreanor Lavington, Murray John Architects, Cullinan Studio and Penoyre Prasad (along with landscape architects Andy Sturgeon Design and consultants Twinn Sustainability). The firms will work with the Lancaster West Residents Association, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

Funding comes in the form of 15 million pounds ($20.4 million) pledged from the national government, to be matched by the borough.

Estate Proposals

In the latest development of the project, Lancaster West was divided into nine blocks. (Grenfell Tower is not included in the plan.) London-based practices Levitt Bernstein and Penoyre & Prasad, will to help residents makeover their homes, and through recent workshops, residents generated ideas.

According to the Architects Journal, one proposal suggests the installation of solar panels on the roofs of all nine blocks to create power stations, allowing for the establishment of a community energy company. In the Clarendon Walk sections, residents suggested new private front gardens.

Other ideas also include:

  • More green spaces for Treadgold and Verity Close House;
  • New balconies and elevators for Upper and Lower Talbot Walk;
  • New balconies, rear gardens, enhanced security and a community pavilion for Morland House and Talbot Grove House; and
  • A pedestrian street redesigned as shared communal space for Camelford Court.

There are also plans for estate-wide improvements, namely safety improvements such as better lighting and CCTV. There will also be an audit and update to the Fire Risk Assessments for all blocks, echoing the residents' initial concerns. None of the homes will be demolished.

Phoenix7777, CA-BY-SS 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

In the latest development of the project, Lancaster West was divided into nine blocks (only three are shown here). Grenfell Tower is not included in the plan.

“After the tragedy of last June, this is a fundamental step in residents beginning the process of rebuilding their lives and looking to the future,” said Jacqui Haynes, Chair of LWRA.

“The LWRA is working to ensure that the council lives up to its promises to continue to listen to residents and make this a model estate and secure our rights to improved living conditions.”

The Tower

As for the tower, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government announced an agreement that will allow the survivors of the fire to ultimately decide what happens.

Officials said in the document that the community will lead the decision-making with the bereaved getting a veto on all future decisions and a 50 percent representative vote.

Reports indicate that the site will likely be turned into a memorial for victims and its repurposing will coincide with other developments in the neighborhood, including the renaming of the nearby rail station.

"The common assumption is that this consultation will lead towards agreement on a fitting memorial to remember those who lost their lives, and a request to Transport for London for the renaming of Latimer Road Underground Station to commemorate Grenfell Tower," the document states.

   

Tagged categories: Fire; Government; Health and safety; Laws and litigation; Safety

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