The Royal Arsenal, Woolwich

©John Anderson/Berkely Homes (East Thames LTD)
©John Anderson/Berkely Homes (East Thames LTD)

Region: London

Local Authority: Greenwich

Owner Type: Many

Year of Intervention: 1997 - 2014

Summary: The Royal Arsenal, Woolwich: Understanding of the historical construction techniques can be a valuable technique in redevelopment.

Description: Regeneration of this immense, hugely significant site is bringing back to life 26 listed buildings and a vast range of other structures which played a key role in Britain’s development as a leading industrial power.Many of these buildings had been on the 'Buildings at Risk' register.
Issue: The significant challenge of decontamination has already been overcome. Users such as the Royal Artillery Museum and the Greenwich Heritage Centre are moving in. Experienced conservation architects are working with English Heritage on the conservation and conversion of such structures as the Crimean War period Paper Cartridge Factory and Laboratory Offices and the early 18th century Academy Building. In other parts of the site, historic workshop complexes are proving eminently suitable for conversion to modern industrial uses.
Strategy: Berkeley Homes, are converting buildings from the Napoleonic period onwards into novel, attractive homes, with good transport links to London. The gateway to the 1856 Rifle Shell Factory has already been adapted as a show flat and sales offices.
Outcome: The Royal Arsenal site, itself the size of a small town, is set to play a key role in the regeneration of the Thames Gateway. The government plans to address the problem of housing supply and regenerate the economy of east London, which represents a unique opportunity both to create new communities and invigorate existing ones.

Keywords: Design in context , Regeneration, Sustainability

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