09:05AM, Thursday 31 May 2018
Fresh plans for a multi-million pound town centre redevelopment are unveiled today (Thursday).
About 27,000 sq ft of communal space, including green spaces, outdoor seating areas, landscaping and trees will be provided in The Landing.
The plans include 519 new homes in six new buildings. It is not clear how many affordable homes there will be, but developer HUB said it wants ‘as much as possible that is viable’. It also not known at this stage the height of the proposed buildings.
The project would be built on land bordered by Queen Street, King Street and Broadway, which is owned by Smedvig.
The revised application comes after outline planning permission was granted to previous project leader London and Aberdeen in September 2015.
Subject to permission, the first of two stages is expected to start in January 2019 and the full development should be finished by summer 2022.
Damien Sharkey, HUB development director, said: “We want to deliver good quality homes, we want to set a new benchmark for quality in Maidenhead. But we also want these homes to be affordable. Not just ‘Affordable Housing’, I’m talking about affordable with a small ‘a’ as well.”
Along with the communal space, there will be 56,300 sq ft of office space and 36,600 sq ft of retail, leisure and workspace. The plans also include 239 parking spaces and storage for 590 bicycles.
HUB says 1,500 people in Maidenhead took part in its public consultation, resulting in the developer altering its initial plans.
Originally it planned for a ‘hard’ communal space with a water feature, but public opinion caused it to alter the design to three green spaces, with a main central area and smaller ones to the north and south.
Mr Sharkey also assured the public that despite the plans for the space and developers changing several times over the years, HUB is confident this plan will be delivered.
He said: “Smedvig [the land owner] is on board because of our delivery experience. We have built almost 1,000 homes in the last four years.
“We fully intend to be on site early next year.
“We're extremely excited, we think the homes and office spaces will be exceptional and that we will set a new benchmark for quality housing.”
The plans also focus heavily on ‘ground floor activities’, encouraging people to spend time in the town centre.
Mr Sharkey said: “People want somewhere nice to go and have dinner after work, they want to go and have a drink. We want to keep these public spaces as open as possible, somewhere people can have a sandwich.
“We don’t want it to be gated, we will keep it as open as possible.”
Christophe Egret, founding director of scheme architects Studio Egret West, said: “The scheme provides employment opportunities and new community facilities, while the carefully designed homes provide a chance to live within the town centre, close to the soon to open Crossrail link at Maidenhead Station.”
A full planning application is being submitted to the Royal Borough for the first stage of the project, made up of four buildings, while an outline application is going in for phase two, which includes two more buildings.
Council leader Simon Dudley (Con, Riverside) said: “We have yet to see the development plan for that site but we want the right scheme for Maidenhead. I am really looking forward to seeing it and we want to work well with them. It’s running on a similar timeline to the York Road development so we would be looking at a decision in September.”
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