The proposed building follows the pavement on three sides and closes the gap between the site and the neighbouring building at 1 76 and 1 78 Highcross Street. At the southern end of the site the building is set back from the pavement line in order to frame views of the church and to provide some space in front of the building’s primary entrance. Along Highcross Street and Great Central Street the building steps away from the pavement, above a podium, which addresses the gradient in the site and provides privacy to ground floor flats and ventilation to an undercroft car park.
Access, Amenity and Servicing
Primary pedestrian access to the building is from the southern end of the building, creating an opportunity for some public/private space on All Saints’Open and a connection with the church.
Vehicular access to the undercroft car park is from an entrance on Great Central Street. Servicing of the building will also take place from the undercroft. Cycle storage will be provided at the southern end of the building either side of the main entrance in a discrete, secure and convenient store.
Two staircases rise up from the undercroft to all floors within the building. As the building steps up towards the southern end, one of the stairs becomes redundant, therefore the primary access stair is at the southern end along with the lift core.
Flats are arranged around a central atrium with a corridor on either side. The building narrows and steps away from the pavement below providing flats with an aspect directly onto the streets and to the north via the set-backs in the elevation.
As the building progresses south towards Great Central Street, it gains height up to an eighth storey group of flats. As the building steps up the street each top storey will be set back on three sides, culminating as a group of flats on the top roof set back on all four sides.
The building has been designed not to hug the pavement line, but to step back from the pavement, creating a series of triangular spaces in the elevation and breaking down an otherwise large façade into elemental building structures. These, coupled with the way each building element reduces in height along the street, will give the building the appearance of a number of buildings, each smaller than the whole.
The building entrance on All Saints’Open is set back from the street in order to define it and to give the building a public presence where it meets the church.
Site sections have informed the height and massing of the building in context with other existing and proposed buildings in the vicinity.