The competition is seeking master planning concepts for the proposed residential development of a 45 Hectare site to the north of Letchworth, which will be the first expansion of the Garden City in a generation.
Founded in 1903, Letchworth Garden City was the brainchild of social reformer Ebenezer Howard, whose vision to improve lives for people by combining the best of living and working in the town and country, led to a vibrant international garden city movement. Today, the need for new homes means that there will be an expansion of the urban area of Letchworth for the first time since the 1980’s. Design concepts generated by the winning team will inform the overall masterplan and subsequent build on an approximately 110-acre case study site. The site is included in the North Herts Local Plan for housing, which is due to be adopted in 2019, and includes proposals for 900 new homes on this land (of which 40% will be affordable housing), together with a new primary school, local community facility and retail space.
The competition is open internationally to architect-led design teams, with inter-disciplinary collaboration encouraged, as is collaboration between practices of different size, expertise and experience. The first phase of the competition seeks initial design proposals which will be assessed anonymously, with up to four schemes selected to proceed to the second phase of the competition. Anonymity will be lifted at the second phase, with short‐listed teams invited to develop their ideas in response to general and scheme‐specific feedback on the phase one design submissions. Following a public exhibition of the developed design concepts, the four short-listed teams will be invited to present their proposals to the Judging Panel in early April 2019. Each short-listed team will receive an honorarium of £6,000 (+VAT) with the winning team to receive an additional £6,000 (+VAT).