Slough’s Queensmere Shopping Center transformation revealed in new footage
New images have just been released of what a major shopping mall redevelopment will look like.
Up-to-date designs and fresh photos were shown from Slough’s Queensmere Shopping Center to the Slough City Council Planning Committee.
British Land developers told advisers at a meeting on Wednesday that they were “days away” from submitting the master plans.
Read more: Slough High Street restaurant and shop could be replaced with 99 apartments
The redevelopment of the Queensmere shopping center in the 1970s, as well as Dukes House, Wellington House, the first phase of major transformation projects in downtown Slough.
Slough town center transformation plans include
- Up to 1,600 apartments – which will mainly be a mix of one, two and three bedrooms.
- 12.5% ââof that will be affordable housing – with âreview mechanismsâ, which means this could increase based on additional sustainability surveys.
- Up to 550 parking spaces
- Up to 40,000 mÂ² of office space – subject to change based on demand.
- 5,500 mÂ² – 12,000 mÂ² of retail, food and beverage stores
- 0 mÂ² – 1,500 mÂ² concert hall / cinema
- 0 mÂ² – 2250 mÂ² bar / hot dishes to take away
If the plans are given the green light, demolition and construction, which will take place in phases, could begin in 2023 and last 14 years.
Jayme McArthur, planning director at British Land, told advisers to the west of the proposed redeveloped site, what they call the ‘city center’ will be the ‘civic heart’ of Slough where a new town square is proposed.
From east to west will be the improved High Street where the retail business will be located. To the north is the location of apartment buildings.
In terms of scale, buildings will start from six stories and gradually increase to 12 stories as you move through the renovated downtown area. The tallest buildings will be in the center, reaching 18 breathtaking stories.
The tallest blocks will be on Wellington Street, which gives an âurban density without being significant in heightâ.
Jayne McArthur explained, âWe have sensitive limits. We have been respectful of the High Street and looked at the smaller scale development in the south and also at the church. It is classified grade II, and we must respect this parameter.
Four public space zones are also proposed, called town square, neighborhood square, community center and urban park.
The ‘bustling’ town square will have the facilities Slough already has, such as the Curve and the Church, while also offering new centers such as community use or new apartments or offices, if the demand is there.
Jayne McArthur said: âWe think this should be the civic heart of your downtown, building on some of the fantastic heritage you have like the church and the architecture of the curve.
âSo we think it’s a space that will attract this program of events, a place where people can come and spend time with families, eat and drink, therefore, really the civic heart of the downtown core. “
Between the Observatory and the eastern edge of the project will be the community heart space. Few details were given, but British Land is hopeful that it can be “made much more interesting” and a public space for residents and commuters to use as they make that north-south link through the city center.
To the north of the site is the Urban Park, where the Tesco’s can be seen from afar, will be used as an open space and a pavilion or kiosk could be erected. Events could be organized there, the meeting said.
The local space could be used for local facilities for the use of residents, such as bakeries or cafes.
Ms McArthur also said they plan to build “green neighborhood streets” throughout the city with new landscaping and new trees. A new âintimateâ Mackenzie Street route leading east to the New Town Square is also offered.
However, Cllrs has been informed that a new multi-storey car park could be offered at a later stage if British Land delivers all of the 40,000 mÂ² of office space. This could change depending on the demand for office space as the master plans will give developers “flexibility” if changes are required.
Speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service after the meeting, Russell O’Hare, Director of Development at British Land, explained that if the proposed office space is fully utilized, it could reduce the number of apartments to around 950.
He said: âAs the last 18 months show, what you think is one way right could change quite quickly. So having the flexibility to react is very important for development and our point of view on this is that it improves the opportunity for long term regeneration that exists in the city by incorporating this flexibility into the application.
Hatch consultants described the social and economic benefits of the plans if developers were to deliver the âmaximum scenarioâ such as developing the 1,600 apartments.
When completed in 2036, the new town center could attract 3,200 people to live and work in Slough, 700 jobs will be supported on site – 25% could be for locals – and around Â£ 20million will be generated in wages rough on site.
Mr. O’Hare also said plans to redevelop the Observatory House would arrive “around 2030”.
He said: âWe would probably be a third through the redevelopment of Queensmere so that we start to see what this form of Observatory app will look like because what we are learning about Slough and the markets is moving around us, this makes it possible to be more flexible in this approach of the Observatory.
“One of the advantages of producing the Queensmere approach is that we can be more responsive to future changes on the Observatory.”
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