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FIRST LOOK: PTEa's Highbury Quadrant housing

Footprint tours Pollard Thomas Edwards architects (PTEa) new EPC-A rated housing development in Stoke Newington

The London architecture practice is on the verge of completing a 38-unit housing scheme in Highbury. 

PTEa's Highbury Quadrant winning scheme

PTEa’s Highbury Quadrant winning scheme

PTEa ran a Good Homes Alliance event where project architect Tom Dollard presented the nearly complete £5.1 million housing project to a group of industry professionals. After a presentation in a completed two-bedroom flat, our group was clad in high-vis jackets and hard hats, ready to be led around the site and given the opportunity to see and question the scheme in its finishing stages. Due to complete next month, the five-storey new-build scheme includes 38 homes [24 flats and 14 houses] on Riversdale Road on the edge of Clissold Park.


PTEa scheme replaces 1960s housing estate on right

PTEa scheme replaces 1960s housing estate on right

The architects were selected via a competition whose brief was to replace existing dilapidated 1960s council housing on the site with a social housing scheme. Beating two other competitors, Family Mosaic and PTEa’s scheme [presented with a soap model] was praised for its community garden, trees, allotments, building height and overall response to the site.

Courtyard in PTEa's Highbury Quadrant

Courtyard in PTEa’s Highbury Quadrant

The scheme is comprised of two main volumes which vary in height, mass and external materials. A principle brick-clad block fronts the street, while a small cedar shingle-clad volume sits more quietly in the courtyard.  

Cedar Shingle cladding on PTEa's Highbury Quadrant

Cedar shingle cladding on PTEa’s Highbury Quadrant

The scheme - which meets Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4 - was ‘dictated by the code’, according to Dollard. It features a high performance fabric and natural ventilation and incorporates 20% renewable energy from PVs. Landscape and biodiversity were important drivers for the project which includes green roofs and acommunity vegetable garden.

PTEa's Highbury Quadrant winning scheme

PTEa’s Highbury Quadrant winning scheme

The PVs will provide electricity for the individual houses and communal spaces within the development, with an aim to reduce utility bills for tenants. The feed-in tariff will go to Family Mosaic to offset maintenance costs throughout the life of the project. With such attention to renewable energy, it was surprising to see no natural light in either the stairwells below a flat roof or bathrooms on exterior walls.

PTEa's Highbury Quadrant elevation of winning scheme

PTEa’s Highbury Quadrant elevation of winning scheme


Total estimated ‘regulated’ energy demand: 234,411kWh/yr.

Total estimated PV energy produced:  32,755kWh/yr

Total estimated percentage carbon reduction:  23%

Total estimated percentage PV energy production against total estimated ‘regulated’ energy demand:  14%.

[Based on SAP design stage final results]

Rear Elevation on PTEa's Highbury Quadrant

Rear Elevation on PTEa’s Highbury Quadrant

Proposing a Soft Landings approach, PTEa hope to receive funding to monitor the scheme for two years. This would be an extremely welcome initiative to establish how this EPC-A rated scheme operates in use.

The GHA is to be commended for organising these very informative tours.

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