Our role in Portsmouth was working as part of a large team led by Chapman Taylor. We were responsible for the design of three blocks of this huge retail-led development, and brought to the team our valuable experience of working with English Heritage on complex sites. All three blocks surround a new space abutting St Agatha’s, a Grade II* listed church. Our key idea was the reintegration of the church into the proposed urban fabric, making it an integral part of the urban design and a positive element in the regeneration of the city centre.
The 13,500m2 department store anchors the western end of the development. It was our first shell-and-core building and a major new building type for us, drawing on our experience of retail design at Bolton Market Hall. Working very closely with the client’s team and Marks and Spencer we found a way of siting the department store adjacent to the listed church in a way that everyone was happy with, and secured the necessary permissions and the agreement for lease.