Becontree was conceived as part of the Garden City movement, with large front and back gardens, parks and undefined green amenity spaces that were left over from dividing up farmland into plots for homes.
On the centenary of the estate, RIBA is working in collaboration with Create London and London Borough of Barking and Dagenham (LBBD) to celebrate the estate’s groundbreaking and radical past, but also to reimagine Becontree’s future.
This commission looks at redesigning 12 neglected and underused corner plots to help inform LBBD’s long-term strategy for unused land across the estate.
The brief for a greening or biodiverse proposal was developed in conversation with residents of the estate. The project continues to be shaped and refined by local engagement and to connect with primary schoolchildren through RIBA’s National Schools Programme.
To reflect the diverse community of Becontree, six emerging and mid-career architectural practices with Black, Asian or minority ethnicities represented in their senior leadership were invited to propose a way to make the corner plots more deliberate, to increase their social potential, biodiversity, and sustainability.
The selection panel chose nimtim architects with artist Katie Schwab. Take a look below to see nimtim’s proposal, as well as the ideas of four shortlisted practices.
The corner plot commission is part of the Becontree centenary, a partnership between Create London, London Borough of Barking & Dagenham (LBBD) and RIBA, supported by LBBD.