New Town Hall Scheme

Hopefully many of you were able to get to the consultations/exhibition on the new scheme.  Reactions from members seemed generally positive.

Remember this was an initial consultation and the design/development team recognised that there was much work to be done to get the scheme up to a planning application.

Here is what I have written on the proposals so far:
A number of points have been raised by members as follows:
– Members seemed generally happy with the overall arrangement of the scheme, layout, heights etc of the blocks. 
– Excellent to see the cinema will be reinstated. 
– There was support for the mix of housing proposed : A suggestion that this should be more student housing was not supported.
– There was concern that the element of market housing should encourage genuine local residents in order to support the facilities being provided and avoid any oversees/buy to leave sales.
– There was a feeling that the majority of the elevations need revisiting as they are very dull – particularly onto King Street and those framing the view into the Old Town Hall.
– The treatment of the balconies needs to be more carefully considered. One member suggested that these should be in timber.
– Many are celebrating the demise of the Town Hall extension (I am one of the few people who quite like it!).
– Some felt that the open space in front of the old Town Hall should be widened to provide a fuller view from King Street.
– There is concern at the relationship between the new block on Nigel Playfair Avenue and the rear of the Pocklington Buildings in Cromwell Avenue. The space here is less generous than in the previous scheme and either the block must be reduced in height or redesigned with a narrower footprint (or both?).
– The potential of the refurbished Town Hall and the glazed upward extension is very exciting. Most people liked the glazed box approach although there was some concern about the height and how it affected views from the River/Furnivall Gardens.
The redesigned courtyard space an glass lifts were liked by many provided that the space receives sufficient daylight.
– There was a suggestion that the raised roof should be more in keeping with the 1930s style and maybe like the DunnHumby dome on Brook Green but this was not generally supported. 
– Another suggestion was that the top of the glazed box should be more like that of the ‘floating roof’ on the RSH Maggie’s Centre on Fulham Palace Road.
– Concerns were raised about the small amount of car parking and whether this would be adequate in the context of all the potential needs – Civic, retail, cinema, residential etc.
– People queried whether the funds are really there to do all of this scheme including the Town Hall extension and refurb.

– Members are keen to see the project progressed as quickly as possible.


The project team are to be congratulated on the amount of progress made to date on the scheme in a very short space of time.

Author: Hammersmith Society

Membership secretary