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PLP wins planning for £1bn South Bank towers scheme

PLP Architecture has won permission for the 130,000m² mixed-use redevelopment of Ludgate and Sampson house on London’s South Bank

The Thameside £1 billion scheme for the Carlyle Group was approved last night (8 October) by Southwark Council’s strategic planning committee.

Featuring 87,000m² of homes, 42,000m² of offices, 2,300m² of retail and 1,700m² of cultural space, the nine-building cluster ranges in height from five to 48 storeys.

The project includes the demolition of the Ludgate and Sampson office blocks which stand at the end of Blackfriar’s end close to Ian Simpson’s proposed One Blackfriars scheme for Berkeley. The ‘Brutalist’ Sampson House was completed in 1979 by Fitzroy Robinson & Partners as a processing centre for Lloyds Bank and the 1989 Ludgate House was originally home to the Daily Express newspaper.

The project will be delivered in phases as existing leases expire, meaning construction could last from 2015 until early 2023.

Mark Harris, managing director at The Carlyle Group, said: The site, which is right on the river, is currently extremely under-utilised from a physical, social, employment as well as cultural perspective and the support we have received from the local community and Southwark Council throughout this process, and last night, endorses our belief in the need for change. 

‘This is a once in a generation opportunity to create a vibrant new destination area with homes, retail and leisure facilities which bring thousands of new jobs to the area, while at the same time allowing us to make a significant contribution to Southwark’s wider housing requirements.’

Previous story (AJ 29.10.12)

PLP reveals £1bn Southbank towers scheme

PLP Architecture has unveiled plans for this 130,000m² mixed-use redevelopment of Ludgate and Sampson house on London’s Southbank

The Carlyle Group-backed project would be built on both sides of the bridge’s southern end, comprising nine new buildings of between five and 48 storeys, reported sister title Construction News.

The development features 87,000m² of homes, 42,000m² of offices, 2,300m² of retail and 1,700m² of cultural space (see AJ 25.05.2012).  There will also be 3,200m² of public space.

It would require demolition of Ludgate and Sampson houses, two office blocks that now stand at the bridge’s end, and so works can start only when existing leases end, meaning construction could last from 2015 until early 2023.

The ‘brutalist’ Sampson House was completed in 1979 by Fitzroy Robinson & Partners as a processing centre for Lloyds Bank and the 1989 Ludgate House was originally home to the Daily Express newspaper.

The developer said public consultation had shown 90 per cent support for the project.

Carlyle group managing Director Mark Harris said: ‘This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to truly regenerate and reinvigorate a large, important and extremely well located, but underutilised, site right on the River Thames. 

‘We plan to replace the existing impermeable block structures with a new, highly accessible urban quarter complete with new residential, retail and office facilities, as well as cultural centres and large new public spaces right on the riverbank.’

Original sketch for the ‘cultural centre’ element

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