Stoke-on-Trent City Council commissioned us to demonstrate the redevelopment potential of Swift House, one of the key development opportunities within the Station Masterplan area.
Located within the Trent and Mersey Canal Conservation Area, it was proposed that Swift House would make way for an imposing development, taking advantage of the canal-side location whilst introducing key movement corridors between the railway station, the university and college, and the city.
The locally listed two storey basement accommodation overlooking the canal was used as a council office depot, and for records storage for a solicitor’s office. The proximity of the canal created the opportunity to reconnect the building with its waterside location and at the lower basement level, four restaurants were planned with a new mooring location to provide an attractive, secure and convenient base for canal boat enthusiasts to stop and relax.
At the upper basement level, an attractive and fashionable food hall was proposed, communicating with the outside world via a modern intervention of cantilevered balconies, large expanses of glazing and a vast, curved glass atrium roof structure.
New public realm covered the existing basement structures of Swift House, assisting a vital physical link between the railway station, the university and college, and the city beyond. Planned to become one of the most prominent public spaces in central Stoke-on-Trent, this was key to stitching together the individual developments, along with the future extended railway station, into a striking cohesive urban environment. Landscaped trees and planting were located to reinforce key movement corridors and provide a soft, natural setting for people to meet and relax.
A new part-6, part-7 storey student accommodation building was designed with flexibility in mind and the potential to offer a range of room types to suit different requirements. The building also includes for a rooftop terrace to support well-being, study and amenity. This space, combined with the new landscaped urban park adjacent, creates an attractive and peaceful setting for future residents to enjoy.
A new five storey hotel was also proposed, located between the new public realm and Glebe Street. The 76-bedroom 3* hotel was considered a gateway building and specifically designed to enable and promote movement from the city, the university and college to the rear of the railway station.