Creating a new destination just off Oxford Street

There is a recognition that Oxford Street needs to offer more than just retail in order for it to attract workers, visitors and residents. Through the delivery of new build, high-quality workspace at this location, we are also able to create a vibrant and exciting new green oasis, just off the nation’s high street.

A New Area of Respite

In addition to providing a new, sustainable office development at One Chapel Place, we are looking to reimagine the surrounding environment and bring forward a transformed setting for St Peters Church with high quality public realm.

Attractive planting will deliver new urban greening at multiple levels, promoting ecology and biodiversity. The new publicly accessible rooftop terrace will also provide amenity space and extensive views to the city for workers and visitors to enjoy.

Defining the character

The public open space around One Chapel Place is unloved with no natural wayfinding. By creating distinct character areas, we can enhance indoor-outdoor connections whilst improving access and permeability creating an enjoyable space with a maximised pedestrian environment.

1. Chapel Place

We seek to create a connection through a gentle transition between Oxford Street and Chapel passage by providing planted areas and stopping places along Vere Street.

Relocating the existing Santander cycles opens up the public realm between Chapel Place and St. Peter’s. Moving the docking station creates a more cohesive public open space where we can create a new public garden space which will provide relief from the surrounding bustle of activity.

The proposed significant public realm improvements around St Peter’s Church will be centred around creating an urban ‘carpet’ that uses details and features from the Church in its design. The design will create a sense of place and by incorporating shared surfaces the space will be maximised for pedestrians.

Example public realm

Example public realm

Example public realm

2. Chapel Passage

Chapel Passage, between One Chapel Place and House of Fraser, is currently an under-utilised space used largely for bin storage. As part of the House of Fraser proposals, the south side of Chapel Place will be stopped up, which means vehicles will no longer be able to access it.

Building upon this, we want to create an active frontage of two-storey arched windows to One Chapel Place along Chapel Passage, which will include new restaurants and will maintain its ‘alley’ characteristic. There will be public seating, and the potential for a catenary lighting/art feature, drawing inspiration from successful examples of active, exciting alleyways across the city, such as St Christopher’s Place.

3. Public Rooftop Garden

We are proposing a publicly accessible small rooftop garden at One Chapel Place. It will be a unique place to escape the hustle of Oxford Street with friends, family or colleagues. Extensive rooftop planting will make it an oasis of green in the Oxford Street area. Seating places will be provided so visitors can sit and enjoy the London skyline. It is proposed that the garden will be subject to an Operational Management Plan which will limit its use to respect our neighbours.

This will be a truly, publicly accessible rooftop garden, that will not require a reservation or a requisite to purchase anything.

Example public realm

Emerging Public Realm Masterplan

To tie this together we are considering two potential designs and layouts for the public open space at ground floor level, and have drawn inspiration from attractive pocket parks and green gardens across London.

We feel that the most appropriate potential options for the new public realm would be a Church Plaza or a Secret Garden. Below, we have included a visual idea of our emerging vision for each option. At this stage, we are keen to understand people’s thoughts on what they would like to see at this location.

Option 1 – Church Plaza

Church Plaza public realm concept

Option 2 – Secret Garden

Secret Garden public realm concept