Set within the Vauxhall Nine Elms Opportunity Area, The Residence in Ponton Road is a competition winning scheme for a development of 325 private residential apartments. The Nine Elms regeneration area is controlled by an overall masterplan though this site is not within, but abounds, the designated area. The site was former industrial land and Ponton Road, which sits next to a railway viaduct, once contained a train station. The developer, Bellway, split their land holding into two plots; GRID was appointed to design the eastern parcel and Maccreanor Lavington are the architects for the western parcel. The architectural treatments however are very different. An understanding of the overriding design principles of the Allies and Morrison Nine Elms masterplan was essential in driving the built form. The two architects worked together on materials, heights and public realm.
A key principle of the eastern parcel by GRID is to provide active frontages on all sides to create vibrant streets and high quality public realm- even to the railway viaduct which houses new routes to New Covent Garden. The residential accommodation is located round a raised courtyard with retail and car parking at ground level. The layout maximises river views and views across the new linear park to the American Embassy. The massing is a low horizontal block wrapping round the site and a taller slab block within. While the detailing is the same on each mass the materials are contrasting quality bricks – one light and one dark. What really brings the façades to life are the highlights of brightly coloured, glazed tiles in the company colours of the railways that once used the site. The tiles are set on splayed reveals so pick up the changing light. They are arranged as a vertical scale from dark red to yellow.
GRID is also responsible for interior design and implementation . The landscape design is by Camlins who are long term partners. GRID has been appointed to construct both phases of a total of over 500 dwellings including private residential, PRS, affordable housing and retail uses. As the site sits above the Northern Line extension construction has already commenced and is due for completion in late 2017.