The transformation of the 2012 Olympic Village into East Village has scooped the Mayor of London’s prestigious Award for Planning Excellence at this year’s London Planning Awards.
The project, which created almost 3,000 high quality homes – from one bedroom apartments to four bedroom townhouses – also took the ‘Best New Place to Live’ award at the City Hall ceremony.
Cath Ranson, RTPI President said: “We can all be very proud of the planners and planning that went into all of the shortlisted schemes. Every project impresses. East Village, London’s newest Neighbourhood, is a worthy winner of the Mayor’s Award. Thanks to planners it is not only London’s best connected neighbourhood with unparalleled shopping, leisure and sporting amenities on its doorstep, it is setting new standards for eco-friendly living in London.”
Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, praised the scheme for setting exemplar standards of design, environmental and accessibility, while providing all the amenities needed to support thriving communities.
“It is hard to believe that less than two years ago, East Village was home to superstars Usain Bolt, Jessica Ennis and David Weir as they prepared to do battle at the London’s Olympic and Paralympic Games,” he said.
“Since then, the area has been transformed out of all recognition into one of London’s newest neighbourhoods boosting a range of high quality housing choices for Londoners.”
Alastair Smart, head of development and project management at The Crown Estate, was one of the ten winners on the night, taking the accolade of London Planning Person of the Year.
Judges praised his leadership of the team responsible for the £1.5bn transformation of a large portion of the West End.
The annual London Planning Awards are jointly run by the Mayor and London First, the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI), and London Councils.
The event was created in 2003 to recognise projects, schemes and planning professionals and organisations that have made a vital contribution to the capital in making it a better place to live, work, do business or visit.
Baroness Jo Valentine, Chief Executive of London First, said: “When you look at the winners – take the restoration of Roehampton’s heritage sites for example – it shows even the toughest builds can be realised and areas brought back to life. In Roehampton’s case the restoration had to be sensitively done and comply with strict regulations, but still deliver high-end property that the market wanted. Our winners demonstrate what is possible when we work together to create great buildings, places and neighbourhoods.”
The awards were presented at a ceremony at City Hall on Tuesday 4th February. The judging panel was made up of representatives from the Mayor, London First, RTPI and London Councils. The Mayor selected the winner of his special award for ‘Planning Excellence’.
CATEGORY 1: BEST BUILT PROJECT
Sponsored by CBRE
The North East Quadrant (Borough of Camden) for its dramatic transformation of a challenging brownfield site into a vibrant hub of activity, and improvement to the area as a whole
CATEGORY 2: BEST BUILT PROJECT – COMMUNITY SCALE
Sponsored by Land Securities
‘The Glass Mill’, Loampit Vale, Lewisham - a state of the art community leisure centre – for its transformational impact on the wider area, benefits to the local community, design and ingenuity
Commended: Van Gogh Walk for the inspirational level of local involvement and community ownership achieved by genuinely collaborative working,
CATEGORY 3: BEST CONCEPTUAL PROJECT
Sponsored by Berwin Leighton Paisner
Copley Close Regeneration in Ealing for the careful, sensitive and responsive approach to estate renewal. The strategy addresses many of the issues resulting from the poor original layout of the estates whilst avoiding unnecessary disruption to the existing community
Commended: Pop-up HAWSE for the innovative, challenging and topical exploration of short term homelessness
CATEGORY 4: BEST NEW PLACE TO LIVE
East Village for its scale, quality and understated innovation
CATEGORY 5: BEST NEW PUBLIC SPACE
Sponsored by Hogan Lovells
Brown Hart Gardens for its ingenuity and historical sensitivity. In the heart of Mayfair, this eccentric new public square is located on the roof of a Grade II listed Substation
Commended: Van Gogh Walk for its replicability and community involvement
CATEGORY 6: BEST BUILT PROJECT FIVE YEARS ON
Sponsored by GVA
Royal Festival Hall for its subtle yet transformative impact on the South Bank as a whole and revitilising the complex multi-level building to significantly improve the public realm
Commended: Old Spitalfields Market for having managed to retain some of the spirit of the more quirky east London retail offer and the careful management of the historical East End fabric
CATEGORY 7: BEST HISTORIC BUILDING MANAGEMENT
Sponsored by English Heritage
- Restoring Roehampton’s Heritage for carefully coordinating the restoration of a number of heritage assets in the Roehampton, bringing them back into use and using them as triggers for the areas wider regeneration.
- The William Morris Gallery and Gardens for the scheme, which involves the refurbishment of the William Morris Gallery to create new displays, research rooms, staff offices and a new tea room and exhibition space. It also included the refurbishment of the gardens around the Gallery back to its former glory.
CATEGORY 8: BEST TOWN CENTRE PROJECT
Sponsored by Turley Associates
Woolwich Squares for its subtle yet transformative changes to the way Woolwich Town Centre works, including the provision of a large supermarket, 960 residential units and new Civic Offices
CATEGORY 9: LONDON PLANNING & DEVELOPMENT PERSON OF THE YEAR
Sponsored by Edelman
Alastair Smart, Head of Development and Project Management, The Crown Estate for leading the team responsible for the £1.5bn transformation of a large portion of the West End, ensuring the Crown Estate is in safe hands.
CATEGORY 10: MAYOR’S AWARD FOR PLANNING EXCELLENCE
East Village: not only for creating a new high quality neighbourhood in east London, but for its approach to housing delivery, its simple and replicable design solution, its scale and its overall quality.