The North Chase Villas New Hall Harlow – A Rare Innovation in Housing Layout

Innovations in housing layout are rare and infrequent so it is good to see Richard Murphy Architects  with a masterplan from Roger Evansgetting an RIBA award yesterday, indeed one of the very few of the 93 awards awarded to a housing estate rather than an apartment block or single house.

The innovation is to place villa housing perpendicular to the street, with the frontage spaces formed by walls.

The advantages are several fold, almost all houses are south facing, urban spaces are formed at the font yet each house has a garden, the classic English Market town approach, but each house remains detached. Varied urban frontage spaces are formed without being overshadowed in the winter. The blind back wall of each house creates enclosure for a private walled garden for its neighbour. so the garden have a direct relationship to the living space without being overlooked.

The parking spaces remain overlooked from the first floor, indeed uniquely you can keep an eye out both on your garden and on the street.  You will note however that the urbanism works much better on the street with more consistent street lines and enclosure.

7 thoughts on “The North Chase Villas New Hall Harlow – A Rare Innovation in Housing Layout

  1. Sorry to disagree with the experts on this, but I can see nothing in the photos that suggests that this would become a good place to live or any sort of community. These dwelling look so disconnected and isolated from each other.

  2. Pingback: The North Chase Villas New Hall Harlow – A Rare Innovation in Housing Layout « Decisions, Decisions, Decisions « التخطيط في ســـورية Syrian Planning

  3. Looks horrible to me, but oh well. Seems to be absolutely no connection between the units and set against a very stark streetscape this can’t help any sense of community. The enclosing garden walls also seem dominant. If anything, this seems a further step-back from the front yard / chatting across the front step approach that helped foster a better sense of place and identity.

  4. Masterplan looks pretty but that is one of the ugliest, least welcoming streets I’ve ever seen? What were the elements that won the prize?

    Agree for the need for innovation but you’d break down and cry if this is where you had to live.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s