Mosaic Place – a major mixed use 11,354 sq.m development in Purley, south London, has been granted planning consent. The development comprises a mix of civic, community and religious spaces, cafes and shops, social support and teaching facilities as well as a 500 seater auditorium, a flexible exhibition space and a sports hall. This will be provided alongside 220 apartments for up to 600 new residents.
Mosaic Place takes forward a masterplan by Proctor and Matthews Architects for two brownfield sites in Purley town centre. The development is the result of a truly collaborative process bringing together the design team, client, stakeholder groups, local residents and local planners. Proctor and Matthews Architects’ client, the Purley Baptist Church and their partners Thornsett Group, allowed the design team to explore the best design response without hindrance. That design freedom has been invaluable and allowed Proctor and Matthews Architects to produce a scheme that responds to their complex 21st century brief, and breathes new life into the public realm that has been lost to Purley for almost a generation.
Proctor and Matthews Architects’ detailed design for a 11,354 sq.m development addresses the larger of the two sites, and utilises the public functions of the brief to establish a civic presence at the apex of the site, right at the heart of the town. A two storey brick plinth with double height openings expresses the social functions within, while a small square gives the building’s entrance the presence it deserves. On to this square a pavilion building, with meeting space and prayer room above completes the line of existing Edwardian buildings.
A slender 17 storey residential building augmented by a lower brick ‘campanile’ is placed at the apex of the site. This is pivotal in townscape terms as it can be seen from all around the surrounding area, and is the only tall building permitted by the Croydon local plan. The use of stone tracery frames expresses its domestic qualities and provides a scale transition from bottom to top, and the building is crowned with a fringe of trees that are framed by an open structure against the sky.
The new development will contain over 7,900 sq.m of residential accommodation, offering a mix of 1-bed, 2-bed and 3-bed apartments. 110 of the 114 units are dual aspect, and all apartments have private amenity space. 12 apartments are easily adaptable for wheelchair users.
Andrew Matthews, Director at Proctor and Matthews Architects, said:
“We’re very pleased that our major new development in Purley has been granted planning consent. A 21st century brief requires a response that is authentic for our time, and our design approach is concerned about place, context and character. Social purpose is critical too, and at Purley we are demonstrating the role architecture can play in facilitating this.”