The Watermark WestQuay scheme is an extension to the WestQuay Shopping Centre in central Southampton. The 4.27 ha city centre site, historically occupied by warehouses belonging to the Pirelli Cable Works, had been vacant for many years, and its regeneration represented a key aspiration of the City Council. The comprehensive redevelopment of the site created a leisure-led development, comprising cinema and other leisure amenities, retail, cafes and restaurants, a residential tower incorporating 260 units, an office and hotel all set amongst public open space and a new plaza.
The outline planning application for the scheme was accompanied by an Environmental Statement (ES). Our expert team undertook several technical assessments, including noise, air quality, transport, built heritage, ground conditions, ecology, flood risk and waste, and drafted the corresponding ES chapters. We also provided a Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA) Screening Report, conducted an arboricultural survey and provided ecological and flood risk inputs to the BREEAM assessments for Phase 1. Following the granting of outline planning permission, our experts also prepared ES Statements of Conformity to support the reserved matters applications for Phase 1.
The scheme lies around 1km from the Solent and Southampton Water Special Protection Area for Birds (SPA) and Ramsar site, designated for its importance to over-wintering birds and waterfowl. This location is also part of the ‘Natura 2000’ network of European sites and was afforded protection by the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 (the Habitats Regulations). The creation of 260 new dwellings as part of the scheme had the potential to increase recreational use of the waterfront close to the SPA / Ramsar site which could cause disturbance to over-wintering birds. As a result, our specialists prepared a Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA) Screening Report which provided the information necessary to enable Southampton City Council to determine that there would be no likely significant effects upon the Natura 2000 network.
In addition, our team also provided a range of transport planning and highway design services from inception to completion of this prestigious project. This included the transport assessments, highway and access design, service yard design, stopping-up and travel planning advice.