Urban R+D are architects Vincent Walsh and Seán Kehoe.
We explore the city at eye-level in search of spare or adaptable space, intended for architectural interventions that encourage the interaction between form and life.
The aim of our field study is to only highlight worthwhile development opportunities, excluding those that may adversely impact an area if developed. The information is ‘responsibly sourced’: the merits of each space are judged by a range of architectural opportunities and constraints such as context, scale, light and aspect, visualising the potential of an underutilised space and consider the impact of it’s use. Potential and impact are the key considerations when assessing worthwhile development opportunities in our cityscape.
Sites identified are of all different shapes and sizes, as long as they are large enough to fit a single home onto using London dwelling space standards. Through this initiative, urban opportunities such as streetscape, building against blank gables, beyond boundary connectivity, permeability through sites, light, outlook, passive surveillance, and efficient use of space are advocated. The built environment is not just buildings, but the interaction of the city and it's inhabitants; streets, homes, businesses, pedestrian movement through spaces and perception of place. It's not just about space efficiencies or the quantities of homes, but the well-being and enjoyment experienced by all of us as we live, work and play in and around London.
Small Sites identified in our database are worthwhile development opportunities, not just to capitalise on as wasted space for infill housing, but because there are opportunities to engage with and bolster already functioning neighbourhoods. A place can be improved simply by looking beyond perceived boundaries for routes to connect neighbourhoods with the movement of people and the already functioning cityscape, and engage context in a way that stimulates the reintegration of otherwise forgotten spaces and people.