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[ Eastcliffe Estate ]

client:
Public authority
area of business:

Landscape Design

sector:

Residential

location:
Berwick upon Tweed

 

Our commission was to review the existing assets of the estate's environment from pavement to vegetation including spaces and movement. From the review develop a strategy for the improvement of Eastcliffe transforming it from a tired 1970s housing estate into a new vibrant neighbourhood with renewed civic and community pride


Objectives
to fully understand and define Eastcliffe’s physical environment 
analysis of the main issues, problems and opportunities for change
review and redefine the public participation exercises undertaken
the fullest possible suite of linked improvement proposals


Innovation
nothing was sacrosanct, everything could be changed
budgetary flexibility to move funding to where it would do the most good
to draw architectural improvement into the public realm innovation portfolio
removing grass, aka mud, from its now extinct role as a foreground to architecture


Challenges
persuading managers of the irrelevance of grass in small cramped spaces
justifying the cost of replacing grass with hard more usable paving
lowering fencing heights to open up gardens and yards for surveillance but mainly for chatting to neighbours
bringing colour and texture to a monochromatic smooth rendered architectural environment


Lessons Learnt
that whilst lives and urban living moves on, attitudes to classical modern architecture often does not
nothing is sacrosanct and change will bring benefits both large and small when simply executed
movement needs control and directionality, to define places and maximise useability
presenting the life long benefits of reduced management costs concurrent with capital spend


Added Value
challenging the garage court to redefine itself as a publicly usable space and not just car parking
challenging the boredom of the garage offering its rebirth through simple low cost re-modelling
moving beyond the brief to promote a new initiative that solves a hidden problem
to be available working days, evenings and weekends to fully understand community use patterns