Royal Docks West

Planit-IE is thrilled that the London Borough of Newham has recently approved, subject to the decision notice, Phase 2 and 3 of Royal Docks West. The developer Mount Anvil, along with partner London International Exhibition Centre (ExCeL), have worked together to deliver the second phase of Royal Docks West and committed to creating a vibrant place to live that will leave a lasting legacy for The Docklands.

Approximately 800 high quality new homes and an exemplar architectural design by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill contributes to the local environment. Various iterations of buildings and spaces were tested at the beginning of the project and were scrutinised by the Newham Design Review Panel, resulting in a contextual scheme designed in response to the site’s vernacular in the historic docklands. This residential development provides a new publicly accessible and playable streetscape, two large courtyard spaces, an arrival plaza, and rooftop amenity featuring a running track. 2,200 m2 of play space across the ground floor and roof spaces will be provided, ensuring every child has at least 10m2 of space.

As part of the landscape design we were asked by Mount Anvil to create real USP in the largest courtyard, as a draw for residents and visitors that makes best use of the scale of the space all year round. Our London Studio responded with ‘The Garden Circle’, a strong, simple and quite unique design that created a slightly elevated circular walkway. This steel grate walkway leads people on a journey through an undulating landscape of dense planting, tight groups of trees and open meadow areas. At its heart, a central green space allows for relaxed family and play use, whilst sensory play trails weave through the trees and planting. Loose planting of native pioneering trees and grasses provide a  suggestion of the area’s history as former marshland. A local constraint was provided by the close proximity of London’s City Airport which not only dictated building height but also our planting palette where we had to reduce the likelihood of nesting and flocking birds.

Planit-IE worked closely and collaboratively with Architects Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), as well as Engineers WSP and Buro Happold, and Planning Consultants DP9.

Written by Antony Nelson, Project Landscape Architect