The architects of Cambridge's Accordia Housing have not been 'cast aside' (AJ 22.06.06). It's not surprising that the real story behind this ongoing project isn't as sensationalist as the headline and string of out-of-context misquotes suggests. The future phases of housing have been designed, with a very detailed planning permission and full construction details, by the existing architects.
The first phase is regarded as a commercial success for developer Countryside Properties, which has maintained extremely good relations with the architect design team. Unfortunately Countryside's joint-venture nancial partner wants to realise its assets, necessitating the marketing of the follow-on site. Whether Countryside retains an interest in the ownership, or this is taken on by a new developer, it is expected that the remaining site will be developed in accordance with the very detailed designs of the three existing architects.
The completed rst phase sets all the construction standards, within a dened palette of materials, for subsequent development. Whether the existing architects are retained to oversee the construction work is yet to be determined. But we didn't perform this role on the initial phases, which have been generally applauded for their attention to detail. One of the biggest contributions that Accordia makes is to achieve a certain quality in the volume housing market, despite the imperfections of the commercial, procurement and construction industry constraints.
This is just another of these sagas where the above ensures that continuing quality well above the benchmark should prevail.
Keith Bradley, Richard Lavington, Alison Brooks, by email