Priory Gardens housing.

Location:Garden Street, Lwes

Description:Design proposals for 17 flats an associated parking and landscaping

Client:You are Home

Approximate Cost:N/A

The Priory Gardens housing proposal was developed following input received from:

– A pre- application planning process with the Local Authority,

– Two workshops provided by the SDNP Design Review panel in November 2022 and January 2023.

– A public consultation at The Depot, Lewes in April 2023.

The design evolved through a landscape led strategy that aims to recognise the key characteristics of the historic town of Lewes and its Conservation Area as well as the wider setting of the South Downs National Park.

The scheme delivers a sustainable, low energy, biodiversity rich, materially contextual design solution to this particularly complex brownfield site in the heart of the town.

It comprises 17 residential units, a mix of 1, 2 and 3 bed flats, each with private amenity and access to a landscaped communal garden at ground level and an upper rooftop terrace. There are 14 parking spaces with electric charging points, 6 private storage or workshop units and a communal activity room at lower ground level.

The development is concentrated towards the North of the site to mitigate flood risk and increase potential for landscaping and widening views towards the Downs to the East.

Staggered massing of the building in both directions responds to the topography of site and minimises the overall impact on the site by stratifying and layering the form.

Stepped roofs follow Lewes roofscape typology, climbing irregularly towards the higher building heights of the town along Southover Road and reflecting the gradient transition of the site.

The varied roofscape and stepped massing aims to follow the existing urban grain and contours of Lewes, maintaining the views across to the Downs from key points in the town.

The tiered landscaped brick boundary wall references another common Lewes architectural feature and forms a datum line and plinth that grounds the building into the site and mediates between the street and the varying levels of the site. 

The brick and flint of the elevations and boundary wall echo the local traditional materials of the area.

Efficient terrace flatted construction minimises the fabric heat loss/gain and embodied carbon.

Considered surface water management with permeable pavers,  green roofs and extensive landscaping at all levels.

Improvement of ecological value of site with increase of soft landscaping and biodiversity measures.

The Priory Gardens housing design aims to be a valuable and positive addition to the built environment of Lewes, promoting the principles of sustainable, locally generated quality architecture. There are few opportunities in Lewes for this type of density of development with such excellent cultural, social and transport links.





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Computer generated images by Miller Hare: