Final designs unveiled for 'beautiful' Kingston town centre public space transformation

By Charlotte Lillywhite - Local Democracy Reporter

10th Apr 2024 | Local News

Final designs for Eagle Brewery Wharf, Kingston (Photo: Farrer Huxley/Kingston Council).
Final designs for Eagle Brewery Wharf, Kingston (Photo: Farrer Huxley/Kingston Council).

Final designs for the 'beautiful' planned transformation of public space by the River Thames in Kingston town centre, have been unveiled.

Kingston Council has submitted plans to redesign Eagle Brewery Wharf, which was the site of the Eagle Brewery until it shut in 1914.

The proposed layout of the site along Riverside Walk, designed by architects Farrer Huxley, includes a central seating island created by a raised timber platform, which could also be used as a stage.

A total of 19 extra trees would be planted across the site, along with new planting beds and a flowering lawn at the edge featuring a play trail of stepping stones, boulders, a rope bridge and tree circle.

There would also be space for pop-ups, public art installations, markets and activities, including exercise classes (Photo: Farrer Huxley/Kingston Council).

There would also be space for pop-ups, public art installations, markets and activities including exercise classes.

More seating would be added to the site under the plans, including new riverfront seating pods, seating pockets and timber seating built into planters.

A swift tower, with nesting places for the birds, would be built where the old brewery's chimney once stood to create a unique landmark for the site, which would have artwork and historic plaques celebrating its heritage.

There would also be a new insect hotel, hedgehog house and loggery, along with new metal railings along the riverfront to improve safety.

Farrer Huxley finalised the proposed designs after publishing a set of options for consultation last year.

Planning documents said the scheme has been designed to be as 'inclusive and imaginative as possible.'

It aims to reduce antisocial behaviour at the site, which has risen in recent years, and improve safety in the town centre.

The documents added: "The proposals will create a beautiful and activated space where everyone can unwind, enjoy and connect with nature.

"The application presents a significant improvement to an existing public open space, which will deliver multiple environmental and social benefits."

The former brewery was turned into a coal wharf before it was bought and demolished by the council in 1970.

The site became public open space in 1988 and most recently underwent improvements in 2010.

This latest scheme is part of a series of projects being delivered by the council and Kingston First, the town centre's business improvement district, to regenerate the town centre and make it cleaner, greener and safer.

The council said the first big change planned for the town centre is the creation of 'beautifully transformed riverside spaces' and identified Eagle Brewery Wharf as an opportunity to achieve this. 

Kingston Council will make a decision on the plans in due course.

     

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