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Dutch-based firm wins high-profile Pathfinder scheme - image

A Dutch-based practice has scooped the controversial Whitefield competition in the heart of the infamous Nelson Pathfinder housing renewal area in Lancashire.

Maccreanor Lavington Architects (MLA) led a multi-disciplinary team, including Liverpool's John McCall Architects, sustainable-design consultants Citylab and Manchester developers R.gen, to victory in the high-profile RIBA contest.

The team will now be asked to refurbish and convert more than 100 empty Victorian houses and build more than 80 new homes in the key regeneration area.

MLA beat a range of entries from across the country, including Allen Tod Architecture with Gleeson Regeneration and Niall Phillips Architects with Urban Splash.

Gerard Maccreanor, a partner at MLA, said : 'We are excited to be working in a Housing Market Renewal (HMR) area, where the challenge is to breathe new life into neighbourhoods.

'The Whitefield area has tremendous potential and we look forward to giving existing families and the families of the future a choice of quality homes that are good for the next 100 years.'

He added: 'Our proposals are in harmony with the HMR programme as our concept, like Elevate's, is a mix of interrelated activities, including environmental improvements, creating exciting new green public spaces, refurbishment and remodelling of homes, and a small amount of demolition to make way for redevelopment and new build.'

The team will work together with social landlords, the Manchester Methodist Housing Association, to bring the scheme forward.

by Richard Waite

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