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If you have any questions about the Virtual Exhibition, please email us at 458OxfordStreet@kandaconsulting.co.uk
We are pleased to share our proposals with you for the redevelopment of the site which includes our Marks & Spencer Marble Arch store at 458 Oxford Street, W1C 1AP.
We are aiming to create a new destination at Marble Arch with a distinctive mix of uses around the centrepiece of an innovative and inviting Marks & Spencer’s store fit for the 21st century.
A dynamic and beautiful place, grounded in its historic context and contributing to Oxford Street’s future success. A place welcoming to all: inclusive, varied and surprising. An urban place, relishing the energy and diversity of Westminster’s International Centre.
We are keen to ensure the new proposals make the most significant and positive impact they can to the surrounding area and to hear your thoughts on our proposals.
You are on step one
Marks & Spencer Marble Arch site is set at the junction of Oxford Street & Orchard Street, at the heart of Westminster’s International Centre: a world-famous retail destination.
The current site, where Marks & Spencer has operated since 1930, is bounded by Oxford Street, Orchard Street, Granville Street and Portman Mews South.
The existing buildings on site comprise of Orchard House on the corner of Orchard Street and Oxford Street, as well as two neighbouring buildings – 23 Orchard Street and 474 Oxford Street (Neale House). The site does not sit within a Conservation Area nor within the proximity of listed buildings with the exception of the Grade II * listed Selfridges.
The quality of the public realm around the site could be significantly improved
In 1973, a road widening scheme undercut the original Orchard Street elevation so that today pedestrians must walk through a low undercroft which sits within the footprint of the original building.
The route faces a long blank façade – the exposed walls of the building’s core. The existing external column line on Orchard Street land within the pavement, is restricting useable pavement space and limiting visibility when crossing the road.
Pedestrians must cross four lanes of traffic on Orchard Street and the crossing points relate poorly to desire lines towards the western entrance of Selfridges (an entrance which marks the position of the original Somerset Street which historically connected to Duke Street behind the original Selfridges store).
The site was further expanded in 1987 into the upper levels of neighbouring Neale House to provide additional retail floorspace. Four independent retail units are set within the building at ground and basement levels.
The environment to the rear of the site is unwelcoming, dominated by servicing bays and with no active frontages.
The servicing spaces are now excessive and do not match the requirements of modern retail stores, particularly the ability to monitor stock requirements in real time.
Delivery vehicles must reverse onto the highway to egress these bays which is inefficient and undesirable in terms of road safety.
You are on step two
The current Marks & Spencer building provides a series of inefficient retail spaces with numerous internal columns and level changes.
As a result, it does not provide the high-quality retail experience expected of Marks & Spencer.
The retail space has a complex internal layout with five retail floorplates that are difficult to access for customers and inefficient for colleagues. The piecemeal expansion of the sales space across three different buildings adds to confusion, as each building has its own structural grid, external elevational treatment, floor levels and mechanical services systems.
The Orchard Street extension includes accommodation for colleagues attending training events which is no longer required, as training is now undertaken on-line.
Current issues with the site:
You are on step three
The central objective of our proposals is to secure the long-term future of Marks & Spencer’s presence at Marble Arch.
The existing store configuration no longer meets our aspirations for a high quality, experiential trading environment.
We want to create a new full-line retail store, with a reimagined food hall at lower ground level providing a modern fit-for-purpose retail environment, set in world-class surroundings and in a building of exemplary design.
This would be accompanied by a genuine mix of uses including an expanded food and beverage offer, best in class, Grade A sustainability, health and wellbeing-led office space at upper levels, and reimagined public realm around and through the site.
Our plans would transform the site introducing a new best-in-class, mixed-use building comprising:
A new full-line Marks & Spencer store providing a modern, fit for purpose retail environment at the west end of Oxford Street.
Best in class, Prime Grade A, health and wellbeing led workspace at upper levels, responding to the requirements of future tenants.
A new and enhanced Marks & Spencer offer in line with our vision for the future.
New landscaped public realm, including pedestrian routes through the site and a pocket-park in a re-imagined Granville Place.
A building which is future-proofed, flexible and meets the highest standards of sustainability.
A new design which enhances its context, that is lower ground, ground plus 9 storeys (including plant equipment) and basement levels which includes accommodation for leisure facilities.
You are on step five
We want to provide a new world-class retail experience at the west end of Oxford Street.
Our proposals will see the delivery of a new c. 90,000 square foot, full-line Marks & Spencer store, trading at lower ground, ground and first floor levels, animating Oxford Street and the southern end of Orchard Street. This will include the reprovision of a full Marks & Spencer food store at lower ground floor level.
The new retail space will be exciting, vibrant and flexible allowing us to meet current and future trends in the retail sector.
The retail store will feature an internal arcade connecting Oxford Street to the new pocket garden on Granville Place, a contemporary reflection of Marks & Spencer’s beginnings at the 1894 Penny Bazaar in Leeds. Shopfronts will be detailed to be openable to the street, creating an enhanced interaction between the store and the wider pavements delivered on Oxford Street.
Generous entrances off Oxford street and via the new east-west arcade link would be supplemented by a secondary entrance on the North East corner of the site facing towards Portman Square, allowing easy access to the store for both International shoppers on Oxford Street and local shoppers approaching from Marylebone.
You are on step six
Our plans include new best-in-class, sustainability, health and wellbeing-led Prime Grade A flexible office space from the first floor upwards that meets the needs of large and small-scale enterprises.
This highly sustainable office accommodation will meet demand at a location well served by public transport, delivering significant economic benefits and opportunities to the district.
The new office accommodation would be accessed from a main lobby on Orchard Street to the north of the site and a secondary lobby off the pocket garden on Granville Place, helping to animate the site and create a new destination for Oxford Street.
Prior to Covid-19, 51 percent of the workplace population of the Oxford Street was employed in professional services, compared to 20 percent in retail.
The proposals will increase the employment offer of the immediate surrounding area. Demand for office accommodation in the Oxford Street district is expected to remain high, as workers start to return to the West End post Covid-19.
The proposals would deliver space for over 4,000 jobs in this sought after retail and office location in the West End.
You are on step seven
The proposals will transform the public realm around the site to create an attractive place for shoppers, workers and visitors.
The connectivity of Oxford Street to its side streets is particularly weak in the north-west district with historic routes such as Granville Place and Somerset Street lost as a result of developments over the 20th Century.
Central to our strategy is the creation of a new East-West pedestrian route which will re-connect Orchard Street to Granville Place. This route will then connect onwards across Orchard Street through Selfridges to St Christopher’s Place.
Granville Place will also be re-connected via an internal link directly to Oxford Street through a new North-South pedestrian route framed by concessionary retail.
Finally, we will be removing the dark and unwelcoming arch over Portman Mews South, transforming the entrance and character of the Mews.
Collectively, these moves will deliver an additional 500 square metres of public realm in around the site, including widened pavements on Oxford Street and Orchard Street.
You are on step eight
Sustainability is at the core of our ambitions.
The design team has ambitious targets for reducing both operational and embodied carbon. The team is undertaking a Whole Life Carbon Assessment to identify and maximise opportunities for carbon reduction, following the UK Green Building Council’s Net Zero Carbon Framework. Examples of opportunities being explored include low carbon materials for floor slabs and maximizing the performance of the façade to reduce operational energy demand. Extensive use of green walls and roofs will contribute to the project’s Urban Greening Factor and improve the local ecology.
The aspiration for the project is to achieve BREEAM Outstanding, WELL Platinum, and WIRED Platinum accreditation for the office space, in order to be market leading in both sustainability and Health & Wellbeing.
Our plans include the creation of a new garden square on Granville Place and tree planting on the roads surrounding the site. Further landscaped terraces, and external green walls, at the upper levels of the offices add further to the biodiversity and greening of the site and will support the wellbeing of future tenants of the building. This planting is then drawn down through the central atrium of the building by a vertical greenwall which is visible from the public realm.
You are on step nine
We have worked closely with officers at Westminster City Council to evolve the massing in a way that will deliver the high-quality and sustainable building whilst enhancing the local context. Our proposals are for a new building of Ground plus 9 storeys (including plant), including set-backs at upper levels.
The massing has been designed to enhance the setting of the Grade II* listed Selfridges. The proposed southern building facing onto Oxford Street is designed with a lower ground plus five storey wing, which then sets back to a ground plus nine storey (inclusive of rooftop plant) at upper levels. The south-facing stepped terraces will provide attractive spaces for additional planting. The views along Oxford Street east and west will provide a strong and clear relationship between Selfridges and Marks & Spencer.
The frontage has been purposely inflected to reflect the medieval street pattern of Oxford Street, with a recessed cleft drawing attention to the internal connection through M&S to Granville Place and to deliver widened pavements.
The massing on Orchard Street has also been inflected, again creating additional public realm as well as highlighting the presence of the atrium and the new East-West route through to the pocket garden on Granville Place.
The proposals re-imagine Granville place as a ‘St Christopher’s Place West’. The new landscaped public square in Granville Place is set in front of the western end of the East West arcade. The garden square is activated by the Marks & Spencer Store to the south and a Café to the north, which spills out onto a high-quality public realm on Granville Place.
You are on step ten
The elevational treatments have been carefully considered to reflect the historic context of the site and enhance the setting of neighbouring conservation areas and listed buildings.
The proposed materials are high quality brick and natural stone with bronze finished mullions. These materials have been selected to complement those of the adjacent Grade II* Listed Selfridges.
The proposals establish a complementary rather than competitive relationship with Selfridges through the use of vertical piers in cream brickwork with natural stone horizontal banding, responding to the Portland Stone of Selfridges. The proposed piers subtly change profile at each level to provide a contemporary reflection of the curvature, found on columns in classical architecture.
Within the façade, we have introduced punched windows in bronze anodised metalwork and neutral coloured glass. Decorative hoods provide an element of additional visual detail, but also shade glazed areas, a strategy vital to the buildings passive design strategy and low energy use. Each shade has been optimised to respond to solar loads experienced for each specific window position and orientation.
On the lower levels, a metalwork clad canopy provides further solar shading to the façade but also sets a street wall cornice line within the townscape. The canopy creates a strong visual alignment to the cornice line of neighbouring buildings and mitigates visual impacts of the upper-level setback massing. The canopy also provides visual depth to lower levels as it casts them in varying amounts of shadow, in the same fashion as historical cornices within the surrounding area.
Above the cornice line, the setback levels of the building read as a series of dressed green walls and garden terraces, providing an attractive fifth elevation to the architecture. These garden elements are articulated to be glimpsed in part above the canopy on approach, providing visual intrigue and communicating the proposals ecological credentials.
You are on step eleven
Our emerging thinking is for all servicing to be undertaken via a dedicated, enclosed loading bay on Portman Mews South where vehicles could arrive and leave in forward gear. This servicing bay would accommodate all deliveries and refuse collections.
Our proposals will deliver a more efficient and consolidated on-site loading bay with a dedicated servicing strategy designed to reduce the number of servicing vehicles, as real-time stock monitoring ensures that deliveries only bring what is required and less stock needs to be stored on site.
You are on step twelve
Thank you for taking the time to view our proposals for Marks & Spencer Marble Arch at 458 Oxford Street.
Your feedback is essential to us as we develop our proposals for the future of this important retail site. We will then take the time to reflect upon the feedback prior to submitting a planning application to Westminster City Council.
We are committed to an open dialogue with our neighbours regarding our application. To get in touch with us following the exhibition, please email 458OxfordStreet@kandaconsulting.co.uk or call 020 3900 3676.
You are on step thirteen
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