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Search for Robin Hood Gardens architects steps up

Developer Swan Housing has restarted its hunt for architects to overhaul Robin Hood Garden housing estate in east London

The housing association has advertised three roles in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) for the controversial £500 million Blackwall Reach regeneration project.

The official notice was posted three months after Swan called for expressions of interest from architects to replace the 1970s Alison and Peter Smithson-designed Brutalist housing estate with modern housing.

More than 20 architects responded to the call in November.

A Swan spokesman explained the previous invitation was to ‘test the water’ only, whereas the jobs advertised in OJEU now represented the ‘actual contract’.

Robin Hood Gardens in Poplar, London was designed by Alison and Peter Smithson and completed in 1970s. Image by Malc McDonald

Source: Image by Malc McDonald

Robin Hood Gardens in Poplar, London was designed by Alison and Peter Smithson and completed in 1970s. Image by Malc McDonald

Valued at between £750,000 and £1.125 million, the contract is divided into three lots comprising two design phases and a masterplanning appointment.

Architects are sought to design phase 1b and phase 2 – including 485 homes – up to RIBA stage D. Aedas submitted detailed plans for the first, 98-home phase which included a mosque in October.

The contract also seeks a masterplanner to ‘review the outline approval for the scheme holistically to ensure that the aspirations of all stakeholders will be met.’

The Swan spokesperson denied the project was being redesigned, explaining the appointment was to oversee the masterplan and ensure later phases’ compliance.

Horden Cherry Lee and Aedas won outline planning permission for 1,575 homes on the Poplar site close to Canary Wharf last March.

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