Planning Awards Countdown: Award for Design Excellence in Placemaking

With the Planning Awards only five weeks away, we take a closer look at one of the shortlisted entries in the design excellence in placemaking category.

Isle of Arran Distillery, Peter Brett Associates
Isle of Arran Distillery, Peter Brett Associates

Isle of Arran Distillery, Peter Brett Associates

Water quality is essential to the whisky-making process. That’s not a problem for the Isle of Arran distillery, which is located at the southern end of the island in the Firth of Clyde. However, a thoughtful design approach was required in order for consultancy Peter Brett Associates to secure planning permission for the scheme.

Owner Isle of Arran Distillers ran a design competition for the new facility, leading to the appointment of Denham Benn Architectural Design. A proposal was developed that departed from the traditional pagoda-style facilities adopted by many Scottish distilleries and instead sought to draw on local influences and the landscape in which it sits. As a result, the proposed building has a green roof and uses sustainable materials including timber. The completed scheme will provide extra capacity for the distillery’s 22-year operation on the island and help to secure long-term employment for the south side of Arran.

Video game software was used as part of the public consultation to allow interested parties to explore the site and see both the coastal views and the interior of the proposed building. Approving the plans in March last year, North Ayrshire Council cited the architectural quality of the scheme as a deciding factor in its decision.

Other shortlisted entries:

ArchitecturePLB took inspiration from the local area and increased public realm provision when designing an 862-bedroom student housing scheme for developer Unite Group in Holloway, north London.

The City of London Corporation’s London Bridge Staircase seeks to improve a route along the north bank of the Thames by introducing natural surveillance and providing panoramic views over the river.

Architects Pilbrow & Partners designed an ear, nose and throat centre in Bloomsbury for University College London Hospitals, drawing design inspiration from its listed residential neighbours.

The City of London Corporation’s public realm design guidance supplementary planning document sets out guidelines on the design of streets and public spaces in the Square Mile.

Pilbrow & Partners sought to reflect local architectural traditions when designing Nightingale House in Mayfair, an apartment building with a new pedestrian retail arcade.

Clague Architects secured permission for the conversion of listed former agricultural buildings at Hazells Farm, Southfleet, in the Kent green belt.

The City of London Corporation approved plans for financial media firm Bloomberg’s new headquarters, Bloomberg Place, on a site adjacent to listed buildings including Mansion House and St Stephen Walbrook church.

The Planning Awards, London, 21 June 6.30-9.30pm: why attend?

This year, the Planning Awards, incorporating place-making categories, will be presented at a ceremony at Savoy Place in the heart of London on Wednesday 21 June. The event will bring together a mix of leading public and private sector built environment professionals, offering networking and learning opportunities throughout the evening. It will showcase the projects, plans and people behind the most outstanding planning and place-making work across the UK.

Details of how to obtain tickets can be found here.

Details of the full Planning Awards shortlist can be found here.


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