Lochailort Investments response on 13/1/22 to a letter in the NWN from the Newbury Society regarding the proposed Eagle Quarter

The images provided by David Peacock of the Newbury Society, in his letter to the Newbury Weekly News on 13 January 2022 are the elevation drawings submitted with the planning application and can be found on both the Council’s website and the Eagle Quarter website: www.eaglequarter.com/the-planning-application

Here is one example of Block A, the nine-storey block of flats at the heart of the proposed development on the site of the current Kennet Centre:

 

These show flat, two-dimensional drawings of each of the individual elevations of the buildings that make up the proposals. 

The images from the Newbury Weekly News’ article of 30 December, which David Peacok believes are misleading, are Accurate Visual Representations (AVRs) of how the scheme will look from Bartholomew Street and Market Place. Far from using ‘perspectives which minimise the impact of the proposed development’, these views provide three dimensional visualisations of the scheme which are accurate with respect to height, form, size and location.

Both types of drawing/ image are needed for planning applications of this scale although the AVRs are more useful in determining how a scheme will look in reality. We would like to assure Newbury residents that Dr Peacock’s concerns regarding the presentation of the Eagle Quarter scheme are unfounded.

Lochailort has listened to the Newbury Society and Town Council and has reduced the heights of the proposals to up to 9 storeys rather than the original 11 so they are lower than Parkway, the Town Hall clock tower and the BT building. 

We are now going a step further and are working on the architecture and appearance of the proposed buildings which front onto Market Place and Bartholomew Street. We want to ensure that the proposed development better reflects the character of Newbury, which we have re-studied in depth, and we are very excited to be able to share two part preview images of how we might be able to enhance the historic fabric of the town:

 

Lochailort’s key aim is to deliver a successful town centre scheme that will regenerate this part of Newbury. Viability is fundamental here and we need to balance the high cost of demolishing and removing the obsolete shopping centre with the significant benefits that the new housing, shops, offices and employment, and healthcare the proposals will bring.

The scheme is also truly ground-breaking when it comes to sustainability, using ground source heat pumps to supply heating, hot water and cooling which targets a 50% saving compared with the existing Building Regulations and brings an annual 300-ton CO2 saving. 

The scheme will also deliver 54 Electric Vehicle Charging Points, powered entirely by solar panels located on the roof of the development. A four-vehicle car club and a cycle workshop with cycle and scooter hire complement this focus on sustainable travel and will help reduce the demand for parking in the town centre.

The affordable housing element has been independently assessed by consultants acting for West Berkshire Council and they have confirmed that given the significant benefits that are delivered via the redevelopment of this brownfield site it would be unsustainable and unviable to look to the scheme to provide affordable housing.

 

Lochailort Investments

13 January 2022

Top image: from 136-AVR-Comparison-images-report-August-2021on eaglequarter.com/the-planning-application/

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