Attendees from across our Design Surrey network recently enjoyed a Study Tour of Rochester Riverside; a successful, sustainable, and beautiful mixed-use regeneration site in Medway.

Meeting at the historic Corn Exchange in the heart of Rochester,  the morning began with quick fire presentations from Medway Council, Countryside Properties, BPTW, and LUC.  Following this, attendees were led on a tour of phase 1 and 2 of the development, wrapping up with a great discussion/Q&A session on Countryside’s roof terrace, under the warm September sun and clear blue sky.

Below are just some of our key takeaways:

  • A collaborative relationship between the council, developer, design team and local community was key to making this development a success.
  • Architects BPTW spent lots of time analysing the special history and architecture of the locality – and this has resulted in a unique contemporary design that feels at home in Rochester.
  • Landscape elements by LUC, including a playground, were delivered first, so new residents could meet their neighbours and quickly establish a community.
  • The Design Review process (facilitated by Design South East) was fundamental to the scheme’s success. The design review panel pushed the design team to question some key assumptions and go the extra mile in reflecting local character.

Design South East would to thank all participants from Surrey local authorities, and our guest speakers;

Dave Harris – Medway Council
Tom Morrissey – Countryside Properties
Mark Bottomley & Caroline Dommett – BPTW
Mark Fisk – LUC

We look forward to the next Design Surrey Study Tour in 2022.

Learn more about the Design Surrey network.