Professional Architectural Apprenticeship

Professional Apprenticeship with GUNN Associates

Professional Architectural Apprenticeship: This month we interrupted the busy schedule of GUNN Associate’s Project Designer, Ted Thrower. Ted has been with GUNN for almost 3 years. During this time, he has undertaken a Professional Apprenticeship at the practice, but what does this entail?

What is a Professional Apprenticeship?

There are two different types of professional (or higher) apprenticeships, Level 6 and Level 7. A Level 6 apprenticeship is the equivalent to a bachelor’s degree, whilst a Level 7 apprenticeship is equivalent to a master’s degree. If you want to become an architect, architecture apprenticeships provide a different way into a career in architecture. They combine practical experience in an architecture practice – GUNN! Coupled with academic training from a university, in Ted’s case London Southbank University. As an apprentice, he has to complete assessments during and at the end of the programme. Ted’s work is all based on real projects within the practice which he delivers in a four-day week, leaving the fifth for the course; the apprenticeship period lasts for 3-4 years.

Ted explains:

“The professional apprenticeship is a fantastic way of getting practical, hands-on experience in a practice, whilst obtaining a professional qualification in a shorter amount of time for architecture – which is normally seven years. Mine is a new course and a new way of doing it. And I think it will change a lot in the future. I’m really excited to achieve this experience whilst in the workplace, and it means I'm working my hours in and then getting to log them at the same time for my degree, which is great!”

Effects of the pandemic

Fortunately, Ted has been able to able to achieve his course segments, whilst continuing to work at GUNN throughout the pandemic and various lockdowns. The university adapted quickly and the course delivery, albeit remote, was and continues to be delivered well despite not being on Campus for his designated Uni day. There’s obviously less interaction with his peers and groups, but lectures have remained largely unaffected, you just get used to looking at a screen!

Making an Apprenticeship work

Having a good practice to work for is key, it needs to be a flexible work environment that will adapt and accept that a professional qualification is being worked towards as well as delivery real projects for clients. Ted has had to be very strict with his time and been given a huge amount of independence to achieve each stage.

“Because it is an apprenticeship, there's a lot of independence. So, if I need to jump onto something in the practice, I can do. GUNN are very accommodating and appreciate I do need extra time during deadline times to put a shift in and do my Uni work, so it's good to have an environment and a support network that allows me to do that.  It’s all about gaining relevant experience whilst achieving a degree qualification.”

The most recent focus for Ted's Professional Architectural Apprenticeship is sustainability and energy efficiencies within building design, how you assess things like sunlight on a site, how you would address prevailing wind and how that works through accessibility. alongside green areas and the areas that are richer, more permeable, environmental factors. This all involves further analysis, reviewing how things have been done previously – the research stage!  This side of the apprenticeship is invaluable, as many aspects need to be covered for projects, but will form a large part of the course modules.

Ted is now moving into his final year which is general architecture. This is where we will see the fruits of the hard work that’s been put in, and will see him design a project independently and then pitch and present as if in a live client environment – the big guns!

We will be keeping up with Ted’s progress with his Professional Architectural Apprenticeship and report back over the coming months. Good luck Ted!

#ChampionaRealOne #GUNNArchitect #design #workspace #flexibleworking #ReplanningthePlan #Regeneration #Offsite #MMC #ModernMethodsofConstruction #professionalapprenticeship

 

 

 

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Super tight sites

Super tight sites feature

Our featured 'Super-tight Site' this month is a residential development in Kew, a change of use from commercial (offices) to five apartments for our client Artemis One Developments Ltd.

Super-tight sites: GUNN has developed an efficient and accurate site viability programme to assist developers and landowners evaluate their sites and this is offered at feasibility stage. Over the last couple of years, we have been successful on a number of schemes for developer clients on awkward or narrow sites. So much so, we’re developing quite the portfolio! Our featured Super-tight Site this month is a residential development in Kew, a change of use from commercial (offices) to five apartments for our client Artemis One Developments Ltd.

The original office building was sandwiched between a locally-listed building and a house. Part single-storey, part two-storey and L-shaped on a long narrow site leading from the main road to the railway line. Due to the fact that this was a narrow site at its front, then widening to a two-storey building at the rear, the main challenge was to successfully achieve the maximum residential units with reasonable circulation and good daylight and ventilation.

The design rationale focused on the need to have a minimal effect on the street scene whilst raising the rear building by one storey. Circulation is along one side and daylight/ventilation to the single-storey building is achieved by the introduction of a central lightwell.

Professional Team:

Architect:                                        GUNN

Structural Engineer:                        Cooper Associates

Main Contractor:                            Building with Confidence Limited

Completion Date:                           Autumn 2021

Duncan’s interest in super-tight sites dates back to when he was studying in the US and was tasked to design a 3m wide infill house and now we pride ourselves on helping developers and land-owners to maximise the potential of this type of site. Because we have excellent working relationships with a range of trusted consultants and suppliers, we can advise on all aspects of these quirky developments; from feasibility stage through to completion. If you have a site that you want us to look at, email Duncan and he’ll be in touch.

We work with developers and land-owners to maximise the potential of their sites. The developments range from 9 units to upwards of 50 units, and often include areas of other uses such as commercial, retail, and F&B. We have excellent working relationships with a range of trusted consultants and suppliers and can advise on all aspects of these developments; from feasibility stage through to completion. We have developed an efficient and accurate site viability programme to assist developers and landowners evaluate their sites and this is offered at feasibility stage.

#ChampionaRealOne #GUNNArchitect #design #workspace #flexibleworking #ReplanningthePlan #Regeneration #Offsite #MMC #ModernMethodsofConstruction

 

 

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GUNN appointed on construction phase of residential new-build scheme, Castle Moat Road, Huntingdon

GUNN Associates have been appointed on the construction phase for a residential new-build scheme of 7 apartments and 3 houses by developer Broadwing Castle Moat Limited on a site of archaeological interest.

The residential new-build development scheme in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire will transform the site of the former British Red Cross Society HQ building, which was demolished leaving a vacant site.

The design rationale centred around creating a viable building type that created visual interest for both the residents and passers-by. The design has been meticulously composed to be contemporary but understand the context and character of nearby housing and the adjacent church. The GUNN design team ensured a level of quality using economical construction methods and specification. A creative combination of vertical timber fins and cladding, alongside brickwork, separates the houses and the apartments, without losing the urban design coherence of a single building form.

The site posed a number of different challenges for the entire team. The site is of archaeological interest, and so an extensive survey, examination, and recording was undertaken. A large number of artefacts were discovered and subsequently recorded. The sub-structure was designed to avoid areas of particular interest such as the ancient moat, and the project was constructed to ground floor level when the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 forced the construction work to stop.

Castle Hill was originally part of the Anglo-Saxon burh, the fortification around a Saxon town (this is where the word borough originates). Huntingdon was both a strategic and commercial location, situated on the River Ouse. In 1068 William the Conqueror” gave orders for the construction of a castle, and twenty houses and parts of the town’s defences were demolished to build it.

The castle was a traditional motte and bailey design with a keep on a hill surrounded by a walled enclosure. This bailey would have been built with stables, brewery, bakery, storerooms, and chapel and the whole site covered 2.5 acres. Despite the investment in time and materials the castle only stood for just over a century.

GUNN assisted in restarting the project with a new main contractor and designed a scheme comprising 7 apartments and 3 houses.

Duncan Gunn, Founder at GUNN said:

“Our client came to us wanting a revisualisation of an already approved scheme for five apartments and four houses. We completely revisited the proposal and made significant improvements to the layouts, elevational treatment, landscaping, and viability.

The greatest challenge of the development is that it is sited on land of significant archaeological interest, being over part of an ancient motte and bailey castle. We have had detailed communication with the local authority regarding the construction method, which has proved extremely successful.”.

GUNN has been appointed to restart the project and see it through to completion in early 2022.

Professional Team:

Architect:                                        GUNN

Structural Engineer:                        Green Structural Engineering

MEP Engineer:                                Silcock Dawson & Partners

Archaeology:                                   KDK Archaeology

Interior Design:                               Ademchic

Status:

Planning Decision Date:                  December 2018

Construction Cost:                           £1.3 million

Site Area:                                         1,500 sq.m.

We work with developers and land-owners to maximise the potential of their sites. The developments range from 9 units to upwards of 50 units, and often include areas of other uses such as commercial, retail, and F&B. We have excellent working relationships with a range of trusted consultants and suppliers and can advise on all aspects of these developments; from feasibility stage through to completion. We have developed an efficient and accurate site viability programme to assist developers and landowners evaluate their sites and this is offered at feasibility stage.

 

#ChampionaRealOne #GUNNArchitect #design #workspace #flexibleworking #ReplanningthePlan #Regeneration #Offsite #MMC #ModernMethodsofConstruction

 

 

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21 home development by GUNN to replace offices on London Road, Bracknell

New-build development scheme Bracknell: GUNN Associates have submitted plans for a development of 21 apartments across 5 storeys, replacing a vacant office building in London Road, Bracknell.

New-build development scheme Bracknell: The new-build development scheme will replace a vacant office building on Bracknell’s London Road into a five-storey residential building that would house 14 one-bedroom flats and seven two-bedroom flats. The scheme is designed by award-winning Architects GUNN and commissioned by Flamingo Investment Group and involves the demolition of the existing vacant office building known as Continuity House.

The site is located on a busy dual carriageway, London Road, a road already populated with office buildings that have been converted to provide new homes in Bracknell. The building faces the highway and there is a large residential housing estate to the rear of the site.

Challenges facing the GUNN design team included designing a robust but welcoming entrance at the front next to the busy highway, the overlooking of residential gardens to the rear and the overshadowing of residential gardens and adjacent flats. It’s a podium scheme sitting atop a parking area. The whole of the ground floor is taken up with a good amount of parking, lifts, reception, and the residential areas start from the first floor upwards.

The design rationale centred around the multiple contexts of the surrounding area to both the front and rear of the building. It was important to provide a sensitive and interesting appearance from the rear whilst avoiding overbearing and daylight/sunlight issues and a robust appearance to the front to maintain the rhythm of the buildings along the highway. By using a choice of contextual urban and robust materials, an excellent standard of accommodation is created giving the flats a dual aspect where possible, and a private outdoor space for each.

 Professional Team:

Architect:                                         GUNN

Planning Consultant:                       Pegasus Group

Transport:                                         Velocity Transport Planning

Daylight/Sunlight:                            Eight Associates

Status:

Planning submission:                      December 2020

Planning Decision Date:                  March/April 2021

Construction Cost:                           £3 million

Gross Internal Saleable Area:          13,000 sq.ft.

Development:                                  21 flats (14no. 1-bed, 7no. 2-bed)

Duncan Gunn, Founder at GUNN said:

“Our design proposal considered the site’s overall context regarding the local area and the neighbouring apartments. The team thoroughly enjoyed the technical challenge of this project and we are looking forward to what has become a very exciting looking building.”

https://gunn-associates.com/

#ChampionaRealOne #GUNNArchitect #design #workspace #flexibleworking #ReplanningthePlan #Regeneration #Offsite #ContinuityHouse #LondonRoadBracknell

 

 

 

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Exmouth Street

Residential new-build scheme with commercial in Whitechapel regeneration area

Residential new-build scheme: GUNN Associates have submitted plans for a development of 18 apartments across 7 storeys, with adaptable space on the ground floor and a generous play area on the roof.

Residential new-build scheme: The new-build development scheme will transform a gloomy disused compact urban site in a central location off Commercial Road, Whitechapel and was commissioned by Weber Investment Properties.

The scheme comprises 18 flats (12no. 1-bed, 6no. 2-bed), commercial space, and a dedicated play area, over 7 storeys, all designed to exceed London Plan standards.

The Exmouth Street site is off the busy Commercial Road and adjacent to the Exmouth Community hub and a large housing estate opening onto a jaded public square. The existing building was a converted pub and was de-listed in 2019.

The scheme provides adaptable space on the ground floor which can be used by either the local community or as a shop/retail facility. The design has been meticulously composed to leverage the footprint character and scale of the site surroundings, and a generous play area or garden area on the roof will create valuable amenity space for occupants. Challenges facing the design team included designing a robust but welcoming entrance off the public square on this compact urban site and creating a good standard of accommodation giving every flat a dual aspect and a private outdoor space.

The design rationale centred around the multiple contexts of the surrounding area using a choice of contextual urban and robust materials. The variegated elevation consists of standard modules of material, the majority of which is optimised for off-site construction. Because the scheme been designed to be as modular as possible, all the window sizes are standardised, the external brick panelling and the bathrooms and kitchens are all designed to be constructed off-site.

Duncan Gunn, Founder at GUNN said:

"Our design proposal considered the site’s overall context regarding the local area and the neighbouring public square and housing estate using Modern Methods of Construction.  We're really looking forward to developing this site in an area that is in need of improvement and invigoration".

Professional Team:

Architect:                            GUNN

Planning Consultant:          Newell Projects

Transport:                           RGP

Daylight/Sunlight:              Waldrams

Energy:                                Stroma

Acoustics:                            Anderson Acoustics

Air Quality:                          Gem

Community Engagement:   ECF

Status:

Planning submission:                 March 2021

Planning Decision Date:             August 2021

Construction Cost:                     £1.8 million

Gross Internal Area:                   11,000 sq.ft.

New-Build Development:          18 flats (12no. 1-bed, 6no. 2-bed).

#ChampionaRealOne #GUNNArchitect #design #workspace #flexibleworking #ReplanningthePlan #Regeneration #Offsite #MMC #ModernMethodsofConstruction

 

 

 

 

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PD rights and new national space standards for developers

Changes to Permitted Development Rights (PD) & New National Space Standards 2021 – 8 Considerations for SME Developers.

PD rights and new national space standards for developers: The government has laid before Parliament a statutory instrument to impose National Space Standards for new housing delivered through Permitted Development (PD). In September 2020 changes were announced around permitted development. PD rights have been widened to move beyond just change of use for things like office to residential to also include demolition and rebuild and upwards extensions of commercial buildings.  I caught up with Nick Kirby from Pegasus Group Planning Consultants to delve a little deeper into the changes and the considerations for SME developers.

PD rights and new national space standards for developers are to come into force from April 6th 2021, where all new homes in England, delivered through permitted development (PD) rights, will have to meet National Space Standards. The legislation is exciting in terms of the opportunities it creates for developers. All schemes delivered through conversion of buildings will have to comply with National Space Standards as a minimum. The measures will mean that all new homes in England delivered through these rights will in the future have to meet the nationally described Space Standard. The Space Standard begins at 37m² of floorspace for a new one bed flat with a shower room (39m² with a bathroom), ensuring proper living space for a single occupier.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/permitted-development-homes-to-meet-space-standards

  1. Ability to deliver better-planned housing with new living working and learning spaces.

 A new series of challenges and opportunities have arisen for developers, to deliver housing that accommodates new living, working, and learning spaces, in light of the Covid-19 pandemic. With my architect’s hat on, this is welcome news because we like to provide good quality, residential accommodation for people. And I believe that from the developers’ side, the negative image of developers trying to develop changes of use into small, cramped living spaces, which has been in the press a lot over the last few years, will be no more. So, what advantages are available to developers when these regulations come into effect and what are the benefits of going down the permitted development route over and above a planning route?

  1. Advantages over traditional full Planning Routes.

Change of use applications that comply with National Space Standards can avoid the normal full planning route and there will be many instances in which permitted developments provide an excellent planning opportunity to gain residential development. The change of use from office to residential for example; even if you are compliant with National Space Standards, this has significant benefits over the normal full planning application route.

  1. No requirement to provide affordable housing.

A developer would not be required to provide affordable housing, which can be significant in terms of developers balance sheets.

  1. Planning hurdles relaxed - Policies preventing ‘loss of employment’ floorspace will be no more.

Developers won’t be subject to the council's policies on loss of employment floorspace.  Previously, if a developer was looking to lose, or convert, or demolish an office or industrial building, in a core employment area or town centre location, many Local Authorities would have a policy which prevented them from losing that employment floorspace unless they could prove that it wasn't viable. Typically, that's done through a 12-month marketing campaign, which can highlight potential interest from the market. That hurdle won't be present in the permitted routes, so one of the key benefits over the traditional full planning application route.

  1. Opportunity to convert and revitalise town centres – Post Covid.

There is still a win to be had here for developers. The stock of potential for conversion is diminished; since it first came in a while ago, the PD for converting offices has been both desirable and lucrative for many developers. We will be levelling up on the quality of housing that is coming out, but with some financial benefits to developers if they can still find a route down the permitted development road. More sites will be available with a higher yield because of location, better accessibility to transport networks and impact on local highways.

National Space Standards are quite a blunt tool. They are used in the planning process already, but only where local councils can prove that they should be used, they have a need for them to be used, and where their use will not impact on the viability of developments for developers. They use them on a blanket basis for national permitted development rights and the granular level of viability on each scheme is not taken into account. Developers will need to be careful that sites that they were taking on or appraising previously, still stack up. There is a transition period before April, where the use of the National Space Standards are not in place.

  1. The GDV, and or rental income will be higher than previously because the space standards are greater.

 After the sixth of April, developers will certainly need to be take into account the use of the space standards on their appropriate appraising schemes. The advantage is that developers will be selling flats and houses that meet the new standards, therefore are worth more. The GDV, and or rental income will be higher than previously because the spaces are greater. The downside to this, is if a developer has a certain volume of existing buildings, whereas before you might have fitted say, 20 rabbit hutches in there, you can fit 10 decent sized flats in there now, so it's a balance to strike.

  1. The provision of adequate natural daylight to rooms within PD schemes

Another consideration for developers when planning out new layouts is because the government changed the permitted development rights as of September 2020; they are now in place to allow for the consideration of daylighting.  Although there is a transition period towards the use of National Space Standards in April, Pegasus Group are already considering daylighting and the provision of adequate natural daylight to rooms, within permitted development schemes, and managing daylight/sunlight reports, to show that the received daylighting is acceptable.

  1. Replanning the plan - timings

If a scheme application hasn’t yet been submitted, there is some time to replan it. If it's been submitted, then it will be judged on the previous rules. If an application has not been submitted, then the design will need to be changed to meet the new rules. Obviously, making offers and acquiring land can take some time, but in terms of business plans, there is still a good amount of time for developers to adapt their business plans to understand how they should be bidding on potential sites.

Developers: Don’t wait until 6th April – Talk to us now.

If you are a developer and you think you might need to change a design on an existing application to meet the new rules, discuss a feasibility study or any plans or schemes that may be impacted by Permitted Development and the new National Space Standards, get in touch. Enter your details below, or email me here and I’ll organise a virtual coffee and an informal chat on a Zoom call.  - Duncan Gunn.

 

Developers: Don’t wait until 6th April – Talk to us now.

If you think your designs may be impacted by Permitted Development and the new National Space Standards, get in touch and we will drop you a zoom invitation.


GUNN Shortlisted for Post-Covid Space Planning work at the Tomorrow’s FM Awards 2021

GUNN Shortlisted! has been selected as a finalist in the Tomorrow's FM Awards 2021 – @TomorrowsFM  #TFMawards2021 for our #StickyCampus #PostCovid #SpacePlanning Read all about our Post-Covid Space Planning work and the Sticky Campus with RUL here: https://buff.ly/3npcJf2

Please vote for us here! 😍😍   https://bit.ly/3mRj8iW   (Select Sticky Campus by GUNN Associates.)

It is undeniable that a new series of challenges have arisen for Architects designing living working and learning spaces in the post-COVID world. GUNN is trailblazing methodologies and implementing Post-Covid space strategies with a number of prestigious commercial developers and educational estates projects such as Regent's University Campus in London. We embrace technology to streamline our service to make it architecturally efficient. By listening to, and understanding clients we form trusting relationships, allowing us to give professional architectural advice and beyond that is personal to each client. By stepping up and pioneering new ways of working like our ‘Re-planning the plan’ methodology, we can be agile in our thinking and planning. These new best practices apply to blueprints, floorplans, and masterplans and ensure that flexible spaces of the future prioritise the public’s wellbeing above everything.

At GUNN we pride ourselves on meeting our clients’ technical brief whilst exceeding their aspirations. To reach these ends we have a very simple process: we experience and analyse the site and its context; we listen to our clients: we always keep an open stream of Clients & Architects dialogue: we understand the impact of our schemes; we act professionally and give good, considered advice. We are firm believers that we are always learning and that we should always listen and empathise with the stakeholders in our projects; this is how we develop and add value to clients’ developments.

GUNN Shortlisted! We are delighted to be shortlisted for this award and thank you for voting for us!


Hanelore Dumitrache

Hanelore Dumitrache becomes a Registered Architect

Hanelore Dumitrache our senior project designer, completed her RIBA Part 3 diploma with Distinction in October. She is now a fully qualified Architect after 10 years of hard work and study. Her registration in the European Union is ongoing, and she’s looking towards a full qualification as a European Architect in the upcoming weeks.

Duncan Gunn said:

“I am delighted that Han has become a registered architect. I know how much work and passion she has put into this achievement and, although I knew she would sail though, this is very well deserved. – Congratulations Han – we are all super proud of you!”

Company Profile:

GUNN is a London-based practice of Architects, Designers and Masterplanners. With over 25 years’ experience and a wealth of practice experience, GUNN was voted Best Architect in the 2020 TrustedLand Awards. They provide professional services and good advice to clients across sectors from education and commercial to residential development and domestic high-end developments for clients in London, the southeast and the home counties.

About this service:

It is undeniable that a new series of challenges have arisen for Architects designing living working and learning spaces in the post-COVID world. GUNN is trailblazing methodologies and implementing Post-Covid space strategies with a number of prestigious commercial developers and educational estates projects such as Regent’s University Campus in London. We embrace technology to streamline our service to make it architecturally efficient. By listening to, and understanding clients we form trusting relationships, allowing us to give professional architectural advice and beyond that is personal to each client. By stepping up and pioneering new ways of working like our ‘Re-planning the plan’ methodology, we can be agile in our thinking and planning. These new best practices apply to blueprints, floorplans and masterplans and ensure that flexible spaces of the future prioritise the public’s wellbeing above everything.

At GUNN we pride ourselves on meeting our clients’ technical brief whilst exceeding their aspirations.

To reach these ends we have a very simple process: we experience and analyse the site and its context; we listen to our clients: we always keep an open stream of Clients & Architects dialogue: we understand the impact of our schemes; we act professionally and give good, considered advice. We are firm believers that we are always learning and that we should always listen and empathise with the stakeholders in our projects; this is how we develop and add value to clients’ developments.

Our Team comprises passionate, intelligent, and professional individuals, all with the same ethos of exceeding expectations through creative and professional thinking and supporting clients at all stages of their projects. Everyone embraces learning, thought leadership, and creative problem-solving as the mainstay of our Architectural methodology. We subscribe to a vision of contemporary, contextual Architecture and design with the intent that our schemes will be experienced by people for years to come, and we take that responsibility seriously.

info@gunn-associates.com

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7377 5458

https://gunn-associates.com/


Online tool launched for homeowners, self-builders and small developers.

Build Build Build is an all-new e-learning solution for people looking to extend or convert their homes or who are starting on a self-build, small developer journey.  Today is launch day! Gunn Associates is proud to be part of this innovative product.

What is Build Build Build?

It is an online, educational concept developed specifically for homeowners and small developers who want to undertake their own building project; an extension to their home, a garden office, develop a part of their land or a plot they want to buy. Delivered via a series of online modules, each lesson will help people navigate their way through the entire build process.  From the planning and design stage, through to building and sign-off.

Learning Modules

The twelve easy to understand modules are delivered online via video tutorials and can be purchased as a complete course, module packs or individual modules.  Students can also sign up via an annual subscription method. There is professional advice on each subject in easy-to-understand, manageable portions. Each module is written by established industry professionals, who are true experts in their fields.

Founder, Duncan Gunn, Gunn Associates said:

 “The concept has been developed to help anyone who wants to learn about housing development; whether it be for their own house, in their garden, or on another piece of land. It allows you to ‘own’ your project, improve your lifestyle and create a legacy. The modules will cover the ever-shifting policies and laws around construction and save you hundreds of Google searches!

Perfect for the novice developer to help them make the right decisions about their build project. The modules signpost you to speak with the right people at the right time, and help you get the best out of your team. Whether you are talking to a builder or an architect, it will help you understand how the whole build process works.”

We have partnered with a number of industry professionals who have contributed to the modules. In addition to the online course modules and packs, purchasers and subscribers will be given access to a closed Facebook community group, bonus ‘masterclasses’ and various supporting course content documents.

 

Build Build Build


More Close Planning Permission

Residential apartment scheme by GUNN delights Croydon Planning Committee

Residential apartment scheme: GUNN Associates have received planning permission and praise from the committee for their design for a development of nine flats, car-parking, storage, and landscaped gardens in Purley, South London.

The demolition of 1960’s detached house on a quiet cul-de-sac in the heavily sloping, and leafy tree-lined area of Purley, South London was commissioned by Broadwing Homes to produce a design for the development of a residential apartment scheme consisting of nine flats and ancillary uses, such as car-parking, cycle and refuse storage, and landscaped gardens.

The design centred around the multiple contexts of the existing character of the area and streetscape, the adjacent planning permissions, and the wooded back of the property that had distant, southerly views towards the Surrey Hills. The massing of the design used the rhythm of the existing streetscape and utilised the slope of the site to maximum effect, which resulted in three storeys at the front and four storeys at the rear, creating nine outstanding apartments. The shape of the building also responds to its surroundings, with the rear elevation folding itself around the principal, large, mature tree. Balconies look down to the lower garden, which will be landscaped around the children’s playground and varied seating areas.

Duncan Gunn, Founder at GUNN said:

“Our design proposal considered the site’s overall context regarding the local area and the neighbouring buildings, including the full street-scene. We also had to take account of the setting and outlook of the site, the massing and heights of the other buildings on More Close. We knew that two planning permissions had been awarded? for neighbouring properties on the road, for similar developments of nine flats each.”

On a challenging site, the design complied with, or exceeded, Croydon’s planning policies, with accessible design being met with regard to the flats, parking, and access to the gardens; parking standards were met by providing car-stackers and a car-club facility; and the landscape and ecology will be preserved by the use of a green-grid parking system and the planning of the building. The materials were chosen to respond to the context, with the harder brick, glass, and metals facing the street, and the softer, organically-shaped timber battens facing the gardens.

The scheme was very well-received at Planning Committee with ex-chair, Councillor Paul Scott saying that the design was “beautiful” and “exceptional”, and Councillor Ben-Hassel saying that she would be “delighted if a development like this was at the end of her road”. Planning permission was received on 9th July 2020 in the middle of the pandemic.

Team:

Client:                                Broadwing Homes

Architect:                          GUNN Associates – Hanelore Dumitrache, Duncan Gunn

Transport:                         RGP

Arboriculturist:                ACD Environmental

Sunlight/Daylight:           Waldrams

 

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