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St Raphael’s Estate Masterplan

  • The existing estate, 2019

  • The existing estate, 2019

  • The existing estate, 2019

  • Co-design workshop, 2019

  • Co-design workshop, 2019

  • Aerial sketch of masterplan option for estate infill

  • Estate infill strategy diagram; community infrastructure

  • Estate infill strategy diagram; pedestrian and transport connections

  • Estate infill strategy diagram; green infrastructure

  • Aerial sketch of masterplan option for estate redevelopment

  • Estate redevelopment strategy diagram; community infrastructure

  • Estate redevelopment strategy diagram; pedestrian and transport connections

  • Estate redevelopment strategy diagram; green infrastructure

  • Street view sketch

  • Street view sketch

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Brent Council
The London Borough of Brent
Planning expected 2022
21.4ha (including the park)
Units and density
370 homes, 76dph
community space, retail space

The renewal of the St Raphael’s Estate in Wembley, North London unites a disconnected neighborhood to provide better quality council homes, public spaces and new civic infrastructure. 

Built in the 1970s, the original estate has long suffered from a fragmented layout leading to ill‑defined public spaces and marooned shops and services which are not easily reached on foot. This lack of connectivity within the estate is compounded by its location at the intersection of the busy North Circular motorway to the east and south and by large industry and retail to the north, resulting in an urban island condition. 

In our approach, an important focus has been how to engage effectively with such a large community and provide an inclusive platform to discuss the future of the neighbourhood. Through a programme of co‑design workshops, we worked with over 600 households to create masterplan two scenarios; one for strategic infill and one for full redevelopment. In each, residents used large adaptable models to test different options for layouts, massing, building types and landscaping. To extend our reach, a digital engagement strategy also formed a key part of our approach.  

In each of the initial masterplans, our response to the residents’ brief focused on creating quality affordable housing which prioritised family dwellings, improved pedestrian routes and a stronger relationship to a nearby park and river landscape to the west. With 35 percent of homes without useable outdoor space and resident concerns over safety, we also developed suitable dwelling types which activate and define key streets and spaces. These collective principles have come together to form a comprehensive design code which will ensure design intent and quality are embedded throughout the project.

From our two initial masterplan options, plans for strategic infill will be taken forward by the council. In this scenario, 370 new affordable homes will be woven into the existing estate and fill the gaps in the landscape to create not only more dwellings, but a more coherent neighbourhood. We are now leading Phase 1 of the masterplan and are continuing to work with the community to progress designs.

Design Team

Lewis Hubbard Engineering
Lewis Hubbard Engineering
Max Fordham
Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design
Community and engagement collaborator
Beyond the Box Consultants, The Glass House Community‑led Design, London Wildlife Trust