Design competition proposed for Station Approach

Press Release: 29/06/2015

A competition will be launched to find the best ideas for revitalising the Station Approach area of Winchester if a report to the City Council’s Cabinet is approved (6 July).

The proposals follow extensive public consultation, when the Council sought ideas and comments from local people, the city’s businesses and a range of other groups. Between them, they have set the designers a real challenge in seeking to satisfy the range of ambitions and concerns expressed.

The competition offers the chance for design teams to consider the Council’s aims and the community’s aspirations for the site and to create a design concept for the area, which would then be exhibited to the public and judged by a jury panel to select a winning design.
The winning team would then be commissioned to produce a detailed design for the Carfax site up to and including the grant of detailed planning permission.

Cllr Stephen Godfrey, the Leader of Winchester City Council, said:

The Royal Institute of British Architects regard design competitions as a highly successful procurement model which can help prioritise good design and bring the highest quality of thinking to a project, both of which are essential to a development as significant as Station Approach is for the Winchester District.

This is an important entrance to the City, which has attracted a lot of debate about what is right for it. The competition allows us to seek the best ideas from a range of design teams for a project which is essential to improve an important area of the city and support the local economy.

The design contest would be advertised through the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) as well as on the South East Business Portal and Contract Finder. Expressions of interest would also be sought at this stage for potential commercial tenants and that process would run alongside selecting a design team. The design of commercial premises must reflect the needs of the tenants who will occupy them.

The decision and report of the jury would be reported back to Cabinet for a final decision on whether to appoint the successful team to proceed with design development.

The Council plans to establish a Station Approach Reference Group in the summer consisting of ward members and representatives from business, the local community and relevant interest groups, chaired by the Portfolio Holder for the Local Economy. This would provide an opportunity to involve them all as the project moves forward, and ensure we do our best to hear the wide range of opinions on this important site.