North West Cambridge

Mole Architects as Architects

Mole Architects and Wilkinson Eyre’s designs within the first phase of a £1 billion North West Cambridge Development have received planning permission. The North West Cambridge Development, a 150-hectare site of University farmland, is the largest single capital project that the University of Cambridge has undertaken in its 800-year history and received outline planning permission in February 2013. The Mole and Wilkinson Eyre designs include a supermarket and other retail, 117 key worker-housing units, a primary health care centre, police station and an energy centre. Residential buildings sit around a market square with hard landscaping in the surrounding streets by Townshends and a communal courtyard for residents by BBUK Landscape Architects.

Mole Architects has designed a landmark building at the heart of the local centre on the east side of scheme. Designed as an L-shaped building of two four-storey linear blocks, it shields the Energy Centre and service yard. It comprises the police station, doctor's surgery with eight consulting rooms in one wing along Bus Gate Street and key worker apartments in the second wing facing onto the north side of the Courtyard. The two buildings meet in a five-storey tower, which serves as the entry to the upper levels as well as housing an apartment on each level. The tower is designed to punctuate Bus Gate Street and provide an entry point to the residential courtyard. It can be seen from the cycle path crossing the adjacent green leading towards the city centre.

The doctor's surgery and the food store will be built to BREEAM Excellent standard. All apartments are designed to meet Code for Sustainable Homes level 5 and integrate photovoltaic solar power, grey water harvesting and maximise natural daylight and cross ventilation. Works on the development will commence in 2014 with phased completions from 2016.

North West Cambridge Development

Stanton Williams as Architects


The University of Cambridge’s proposals for the new local centre in the North West Cambridge Development, with public realm designed by Townshend Landscape Architects and buildings by Stanton Williams, have been approved by the local authorities. The Stanton Williams designs for 264 key worker homes, shops and social spaces will contribute significantly to creating this urban extension to Cambridge at the North West Cambridge Development. One, two and four bedroom key worker apartments will be situated around the new local centre, called Eddington, and will front onto the market square, which will be an important focal point for the new community. These designs will sit beside previously approved proposals designed by Wilkinson Eyre, Mole, Mecanoo, Witherford Watson Mann and Maccreanor Lavington, RH Partnership, Muma and Marks Barfield Architects.


Heather Topel, Deputy Project Director for the North West Cambridge Development said: “The architectural proposals in the local centre are a critical ingredient to creating the urban grain for this new district in Cambridge. We are delighted that the proposals by Stanton Williams and Townshends have been supported and are thoroughly integrated with the designs already approved for the development.” The Stanton Williams designs include apartments that meet the Code for Sustainable Homes Level 5. The retail units and non-­‐residential spaces will be built to BREEAM Excellent. Stanton Williams designed the Sainsbury Laboratory in Cambridge which was the RIBA Stirling prize winner in 2012. Gavin Henderson, Director at Stanton Williams, said: “This challenging and ambitious project forms the heart of the new community being created at North West Cambridge. We've approached this challenge by focusing on the design of spaces, rather than buildings: creating a network of public spaces which encourage interaction and support communal life. These varied spaces create a social landscape, recalling the differentiated spaces of the traditional city or the historic collegiate spaces of central Cambridge.”

Robert Townshend, principal at Townshend Landscape Architects, said “We are delighted with the news. The squares are a key piece of urban landscape which is designed to knit in with the fabric of this new part of Cambridge and create a series of thriving spaces for people to use and enjoy”. There will be phased completions of the first phase of the development from Autumn 2015 with the opening of the Primary School through to the local centre opening in Spring 2017.

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