Project

Sharpness Vale: Natural Neighbourhoods

Location

Sharpness, Gloucester

Client

Sharpness LLP

Services Used

Sharpness has the potential to challenge existing ways of working and thinking to push the boundaries of residential led design quality to create a series of interlinked neighbourhoods, using local materials and building on the principles of sustainability to create something innovative and different.

Pegasus Group’s Design team’s aim is to create an exemplar, high-quality and sustainable network of new neighbourhoods that people will aspire to live and invest in with a real ‘sense of place.’ The new neighbourhoods will have a strong nature and biodiversity ethos, using the opportunities presented by existing landscape features as well as creating outstanding new spaces. The development will grow organically over time and will be connected by green corridors, personal transport routes (including new walking and cycling infrastructure) and bus routes with the overall aim of minimising car use and maximising the availability of alternative transportation options. We want to get the basics right, providing easy ways to move around the new neighbourhoods and beyond, either by foot or by bike rather than by car.

Sharpness Vale CGI concept plan for consultationThe new neighbourhoods will aim to reduce the carbon footprint of its residents and visitors. Energy efficient building methodologies, systems and equipment will support the sustainable use of energy throughout the lifetime of the buildings. The development will not be reliant on domestic gas supply and there will be no provision of domestic gas fuelled boilers.

On the strength of meetings now held to date with Network Rail, we are also designing our scheme to include the re-opening of the railway line at Sharpness, including the construction of a new station. We envisage that service to be twice hourly from Sharpness to Cam and on to Gloucester. In the interim, a dedicated coach service will link Sharpness to Bristol City Centre providing a quick and reliable option for commuters. Further smart bus services will be incorporated from the outset helping to lessen the demand for car ownership and usage. There will also be enhanced delivery of electric vehicle charging points across the site.

Economic benefits of the scheme

Development at Sharpness would positively respond to the adopted Local Plan’s principal aims including:

  • Achieving sustainable development;
  • Creation of mixed, balanced and unique identity communities;
  • Improved public transport services;
  • Creation of a ‘place to live and work’- reducing out-commuting and travel;
  • Greater employment opportunities;
  • Easily accessible and adaptable public open spaces;
  • Enhanced high quality environment;
  • Specialised facilities for young people and the elderly;
  • Targeting a zero carbon agenda;
  • Increased capacity for renewable energy generation and energy efficiency; and
  • Improved tourism industry performance with a wider range of leisure facilities.

Environmental benefits of Sharpness

The new neighbourhoods will be set back considerably from the Severn Estuary and will provide a new bird reserve (a new high tide roost area), to complement the existing roost site at Berkeley Pill. Proposals also include the diversion of a section of the Severn Way to a location further from Berkeley Pill, as well as restricted access to the new bird reserve, a warden programme and a ‘bird aware’ equivalent scheme for dog walkers in order to avoid recreational disturbance to wetland birds. Visual amenity associated with the estuary location will be maintained by the installation of viewing platforms, allowing visitors the opportunity to look out over the new bird reserve and estuary, and forming a key component of the wider Green Infrastructure and SANG strategy.

A web of multifunctional Green Infrastructure (GI) will permeate throughout the development including the provision of SANG to absorb human recreational activity, particularly dog walking, away from the Severn Estuary. Work is ongoing with delivery partners and stakeholders including Natural England, the Environment Agency and Building with Nature to continue to develop this bespoke and innovative approach to GI, SANG, and the future management of the new nature reserve.

For more information about this project, please contact us.

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