The original masterplan for Ravenscraig was consented in 2001. Since then, and in accordance with North Lanarkshire Council requirements, Area Planning Briefs (APBs) have been brought forward to establish key design concepts, development quality and development strategies.
The team were successful in securing a commission to develop two major APBs, namely APB4, The Town Centre and APB5, the Gateway to Ravenscraig from Motherwell.
In engineering terms the APBs are underpinned by the completion of very thorough desktop and site investigations along with extensive dialogue with NLC and their consultees to produce an acceptable set of engineering strategies for platforming, decontamination, foul and surface water SUDs drainage, services, landscape and ecology.
This engineering work has influenced a detailed masterplan and urban design codes for the Town Centre which comprises circa 1.5 million ft² retail, 550 homes and supporting mixed use and community facilities, plus integrated transport interchanges intended to support the eventual 3,500 homes and 200k m² of employment space.
Best practice in sustainable placemaking, compliance with ‘Designing Streets’ and all necessary guidelines and codes, balanced with a close involvement with potential housebuilders and the client’s commercial agents has ensured that the resultant design codes are both aspirational and achievable.
Final design code information coordinates servicing, transportation, SUDS and platforming strategies tightly into a set of highly developed design principles.
APB5 includes the integration of a major road overbridge to allow access to Ravenscraig over the West Coast Main Line and this engineering challenge has involved extensive discussion with Railtrack as well as NLC to ensure a compliant solution.
The project as a whole has recently become the first project in Scotland (and only the second in the world) to be awarded a BREEAM Communities Excellent award. It is the first project in the world to be awarded Excellent under the 2011 version of the scheme.