Public Realm scheme to transform the Fair Field (also known as College Green and Fairfield Gardens) into a world class public space.
Public Realm scheme to transform the Fair Field (also known as College Green and Fairfield Gardens) into a world class public space
Stuart Cade from MICA Architects Ltd and Charles Holland from Charles Holland Architects representing the applicant attended the virtual meeting to give a presentation and respond to Members' questions and issues raised for further consideration prior to submission of a planning application.
The main issues raised at this meeting were as follows:
Overall design intent and approach:
§ There was general support for the scheme and consensus that it is an exciting project.
§ There was discussion around the visual connection to the area with Members suggesting that the scheme should have a more visual connection to the wider history and culture of Croydon.
§ There was a suggestion that the flags shown in the scheme could be redesigned to celebrate the multicultural heritage of Croydon and a suggestion of incorporating a peace garden or equivalent.
§ Questions were raised around the maintenance of the scheme, and the team advised that a budget has been set aside for the scheme and it has been designed to be of low-maintenance.
Water field area and soft landscaping:
§ The waterfront feature was welcomed and Members heard that water jets will be part of the water field.
§ There were questions around the seasonality and use of the water feature.
Park Lane frontage and Fairfield Halls forecourt:
§ There was discussion around the space for drop off for Fairfield Halls and the applicant confirmed that this was not due to change. There was general consensus that the scheme is not making the most of the forecourt area and more could be done with further trees suggested to make the most of this space.
§ Members also questioned the design of paving across Wellesley Road.
§ There was a question about the design of the wayfinding structures and how the design reflects Croydon.
Play field area:
§ There were questions around the balance of the green space for the college students and whether there needed to be a more structured area for this use. Members were advised that the play space area has space for football, basketball and skateboarding use.
§ There were discussions around the design of the kiosks which members felt could be more inspiring and have wider connection to Croydon. Members questioned whether these could be designed to reflect historic structures in Croydon and it was suggested that the design could reflect landmarks from other parts of the borough which are not visible from the site.
There were questions around the use, and whether it could be structured as play structures, or peace garden or equivalent. Members suggested it was key to ensure adaptability to a range of users.
George Street step free route:
§ Members heard that the scheme has been designed to provide a step free level access from Fairfield Halls connecting to George Street.
At 8:00pm the planning committee adjoined for a short break.
At 8:06pm the planning committee resumed the meeting.
The Chair thanked the applicants for their presentation, and looked forward to their application returning to the Committee at a later stage.