Members of the public are being asked to come up with their own design ideas for Paddington Place following the rejection of the original ‘Skinny Shard’ design earlier this year.
Architects JTP and Civic Voice, the national charity for the civic movement, have teamed up to hold a community planning weekend on April 29 and 30.
During the two days, local people and others with an interest in the future of Paddington are invited to participate in planning ideas for the future of the site, on the old Royal Mail sorting office in London Road, next to Paddington Station.
Plans for the 72-storey building were released at the end of 2015, with the scheme part of the regeneration of the Paddington area.
But it soon garnered opposition, with the Westminster Labour group voicing concerns , and other campaign groups speaking out against the development .
The culmination of the weekend’s activities including walkabouts, workshops and hands-on planning groups will allow JTP to summarise and analyse the outcomes and draw develop an alternative high quality scheme for Paddington Place.
Plans for this building, dubbed the Skinny Shard, were subsequently withdrawn by applicants
This will be presented to the local community at 7 on May 3 and then developed into the final community competition entry for the recently launched Create Streets design competition for an alternative scheme.
Griff Rhys Jones, president of Civic Voice, supported the need for community planning events such as this, saying: “It is time to change the way things are done and to bring communities genuinely to the heart of planning and place-making.
"An event like this is an inspirational and energising activity where the results of collaboration are seen immediately, with the knowledge that an individual’s input actually matters.”
'Help build the vision together'
Charles Campion, Partner at JTP, said: “We hope as many people as possible will join us during the community planning weekend for this important site.
"Our collaborative planning approach puts people at the heart of the creative process, to share local knowledge and build the vision together.”
After agreeing to its withdrawal, they said in a joint statement: “We have always believed that successful development is a collaborative process, involving the developer, council and community and look forward to delivering a development in Paddington of which Westminster and its residents can be proud.”
There was anger earlier this month when a separate 30-storey building in Paddington was granted permission by Westminster Council planners.
The Paddington Place events take place from 2pm-5pm on April 29 and 11am-3.30pm the following day at St John’s Church, Hyde Park Crescent, London, W2 2QD.
For full details of the programme for the weekend and to register your interest in a free place click here and select ‘Paddington Place’ – Community Planning Weekend (Day 1) or (Day 2).
Registration is encouraged but not required.
More information on the Paddington Place competition can be found on the Create Streets website.