The Crown Estate wins RTPI Heritage Award for Regent Street Vision

The Regent Street Vision has won the prestigious award for heritage at the annual Royal Town Planning Institute Awards 2010. The annual awards are designed to recognise excellence in planning and reward outstanding achievement across the UK.

11 February 2011

Regent Street is Europe's first purpose built shopping street, but at the start of the new millennium much of the retail and office accommodation behind the grand Regent Street facades was in need of modernisation. The public realm throughout the street was also widely acknowledged as being of poor quality.

The Regent Street Vision, The Crown Estate's £1 billion investment programme for Regent Street, responds to these challenges. Since 2002 the vision has delivered ten redevelopments and major refurbishments of circa 186,000 sq metres in built area, including prime retail, office, restaurant / café and residential space. Two major redevelopment projects are also currently underway for completion ahead of the Olympics in 2012.

500 new businesses have been attracted to the area and a number of transformational public realm improvement schemes have also been completed. This year will see the pedestrianisation of Glasshouse Street, near Piccadilly Circus, which will be the largest new public open space in London since the redevelopment of Trafalgar Square.

The RTPI judging panel commented: "The Crown Estate's commitment to sustainable development and tackling climate change is part of a long-term approach to the regeneration of Regent Street which contributes to the wider public interest. It seizes the opportunity to work with the planning system to influence, and directly affect, the revitalisation of a much wider area of the West End. The compilation of a comprehensive evidence base at the outset, the attention to detailed design and the level of achievement already evident make the delivery of the new vision for Regent Street an exemplar. It has lessons for similar schemes in London and elsewhere."

David Shaw, head of the Regent Street portfolio at The Crown Estate, said: "We're delighted that the transformation brought about by the Regent Street Vision has been recognised by the RTPI for its contribution to preserving the street's heritage. This achievement would not have been possible without our close working partnerships with the City of Westminster and English Heritage, along with the professional support of an experienced team that includes Donald Insall Associates, our conservation advisers, and CBRE our planning advisers."

Keith Hearn, Senior Planning Director at CB Richard Ellis said: "We have had the opportunity of working with The Crown Estate over a number of years on both the vision strategy and the various block development proposals that have since come forward on Regent Street. This award reflects a sensitive, conservation-led strategy that is also commercially successful. Most importantly, it is bringing about long term, sustainable benefits to the country's most important shopping destination in the heart of the capital."