The Planning Department has recommended approval for this large waterfront development at Brunswick Dock to the Planning Committee at its next meeting on Tuesday 8th September.
Some local residents will remember when the previous scheme was put forward by Maro with the London-based firm of architects the Egret-West partnership. Unlike the present scheme the main partner, Frenchman Christophe Egret, came to Liverpool and met with local people to discuss with them what they wanted to see and what they thought should occupy the land. He then returned to show residents his plans enabling them to revisit their ideas and critique his interpretation. The final plans were welcomed by everyone and the process was the only time in the last 10 years of Engage’s work that any developer/architect has undertaken such profound engagement with a local population to make sure that the new development really fitted not only into the pre-existing built environment but also fitted in with the actual human-relational-cultural environment too. The scheme tragically collapsed with the economic crisis of 2008.
In this article published in YM Liverpool HERE it describes the above scheme as ‘more modest‘ whereas this scheme that is being recommended for approval is ‘ambitious‘. In reality the Egret-West scheme was stunning and extraordinary not only in the process that was followed but in the final vision that emerged from such profound and respectful collaboration with neighbours in the Brunswick Dock area. Every concern that locals had about access, sight-lines of the Cathedral, problems of public/private areas of green space, rental versus ownership models of occupation, also the intergenerational mix of apartments in each block, the presence of commercial as well as residential and of course recycling opportunities and parking as well as cycling storage were taken on board and integrated in such a creative way. What is now being proposed is the ‘ambition‘ to create as many apartments as can be fitted into the land footprint!
Engage has a longer memory than perhaps the Planning Officer who made the report to the Planning Committee for approval next Tuesday. We wish the new plans well in their execution.