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Mikhail Riches wins contest for Tiverton town centre council housing

Mikhailriches tiverton over the water
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Mikhail Riches has won a contest to design 40 new homes in Tiverton, Devon, seeing off Stride Treglown, Oxford Architects, Studio 54 and ESHA Architects 

The scheme, earmarked for a long-empty town centre plot overlooking the River Exe, will be delivered by a new Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) set up by competition organiser Mid Devon District Council.

According to the practice, its winning design ‘has been inspired by the historic pattern of development in Tiverton, and the steep topography of the site, which rises 8m from the level of the River Exe’.

Built around three new cobbled lanes, the proposed buildings will step-up from two storeys at the riverbank, to four storeys in the blocks nearest to the Grade II-listed town hall in St Andrew Street at the top of the site.

The development features 17 one-bedroom flats and 11 two-bedroom flats, a pair of four-storey apartment buildings on the plot’s eastern edge, together with five two-bedroom houses and seven three-bedroom terraced houses on the western side.

Mikhailriches tiverton aerialproposed

Mikhailriches tiverton aerialproposed

The homes, which will be clad in a mix of brick, lime render, stone and slate, will all be for private sale.

It is understood Mikhail Riches’ winning design scored highest for design quality, picking up 65.3 of the 70 percentage points available from its competition submission and interview.

Practice director David Mikhail said: ‘This is an extraordinary site that presents an opportunity to complete an important piece of Tiverton’s historic town centre right on the banks of the River Exe. 

‘We’ve worked to ensure that we can deliver an economically viable scheme that will unlock this undeveloped parcel of land, encouraging a mixed community within predominantly pedestrianised lanes that lead to a riverside garden.’

Mid Devon District Council opted to develop the project itself through its own SPV following 30 years of stalled attempts at development from private sector parties. 

Existing site

Existing site

Existing site

Council chief executive Stephen Walford said: ‘Our ambition for this site reflected its prominence within the town and its visual impact alongside the river. The design competition attracted submissions from across the country, and I am confident that [the winning scheme’s] vision pursues the quality that we aspire to, as well as grounding its principles in the historical architectural context of Tiverton.’

Mikhail Riches has designed the homes to comply with the space standards set out in the mayor of London’s Housing Design Guide – a more generous allowance than those specified in national standards.

The car parking spaces – one space per home – will be built underground, below the two apartment buildings.





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