Two Rivers, Church Road, Staines.

Two Rivers, Church Road, Staines

Modern

The Project

The existing public house is to be demolished and replaced by a restaurant with 11 residential apartments above it.

The Site

The site comprises the Two Rivers Pub at 43 Church Street, Staines and adjoining car park. The pub has an off-street car park as well as a large beer garden that sits at the confluence of the Colne and Wraysbury Rivers and is bordered by both. The beer garden does not form part of this application. Up until 2010 the pub was named The Phoenix and a pub of this name was first licensed here in 1790. The present building dates from the 19th century. It is not listed or a Building of Townscape Merit.

Staines Conservation Area

Church Street retains some of its older build­ings, but much has been disseminated and replaced by modern office blocks. This de­velopment seeks to conserve and enhance those special characteristics of built form which define the area. Church Street is part of a historic route that provides and contains some of the finest buildings in the area. The relatively fine grain of the buildings provides ideal floorspace for start-up, independent and niche retailers. These uses are essential to provide a balanced retail offer and encour­age.

Character and Distinctiveness

We will enhance the character of the area by respecting its locally distinctive patterns of development, sense of history, culture and traditions. To do this we propose a new development the form of which builds on those qualities and characteristics of this part of the town centre that merit retention and enhancement. We specifically propose built forms that reflect the fine grain townscape and buildings of architectural value within the Staines Town Centre Conservation Area.

Continuity and Enclosure

We will reinforce the continuity of street and the enclosure of space by defining private and public areas. The proposal defines and encloses the east side of Church Street with continuous active street frontages creating a pleasant vital public realm.

Quality of the Public Realm

We will improve the quality of the public realm by creating high quality space between buildings that is safe, uncluttered, active and identifiable.

Legibility

The built form and open space we are cre­ating has a clear image and is easy to un­derstand. It will improve legibility and provide a clear arrival experience that provides a system of recognizable routes, nodes and features to aid orientation.

Diversity:

Diversity and choice is provided through a mix of compatible uses that will work together to create a vital and viable place and meet a wide range of local needs. The residential

Integration and Efficiency

We propose sustainable development in a highly accessible location that has the poten­tial to be served by a choice of modes in­cluding walking, cycling and public transport. Its high-quality architecture will raise design quality in line with government policy.

New and Enhanced Spaces

We propose to enhance what is existing with attractive pedestrian friendly paving and new tree planting.

Access & Parking

Overall, the proposed development is very well located in terms of local amenities and public transport and this has been pivotal to our transport strategy. Our proposals include the reconfiguration of the existing car park to increase its capacity and improve the lay­out and access. Twelve car parking spaces are provided of which 2 are fully accessible. Cycle parking storage for the residential units is provided in a secure area at the rear of the main building. As part of our detailed propos­als, a traffic survey will also be undertaken, to guide the final parking provision and access and delivery arrangements.

Design Proposal:

The proposed new building is located on the area currently occupied by the existing pub and comprises a ground floor retail unit with residential accommodation at first and sec­ond floors and in the loft space. The proposed residential accommodation combined with a retail unit is an entirely appropriate land use and with the environmental improvements proposed to the open space adjoining the new buildings will reinforce the area’s charac­ter

Church Street lies within close proximity of the High Street and major retail and leisure an­chors such as Debenhams. The existing layout of the High Street and significant severance created by vehicle orientated highway de­sign and limited pedestrian access at Clar­ence Street act as a disincentive to pedes­trian movement through the Conservation Area. We seek to improve this situation.

The proposed development is of high ar­chitectural design quality. It is appropriate in scale height and massing and will com­plement the pattern and scale of adjacent modern buildings that are four storeys high located on the west side of Church Street and historic two storey buildings adjacent to the site on the east side of Church Street. It will be constructed with brick facades and slate roofs, materials which compliment nearby list­ed buildings and the stepped design ensures elevations and roofline that will break up the scale and reflect historic grain and form.

The new building on the area occupied by the pub adopts a stepped form fronting Church Street that relates well to the small scale of the distinctive but relatively small adjacent two storey building with its featured gable ends before rising to relate to the three and four storey modern buildings on the west side of Church Street. The corner is marked with a clock tower that will be an effective way finder. Harmony and rhythm in the pro­posed Church Street façade is created by adopting a bay width (4 meters) in common with the adjacent existing building.

This combination of scales and the small mass­ing of the building marries the scale of the existing relatively large existing commercial buildings close by in Church Street with the smaller scale of the backs of the two storey buildings that are located to the north on Hale Street.