Intensification with quality

Two intensification studies for Town Centres in London (UK)


    800,000 new residents

    London faces the huge challenge to find space for 800,000 new residents within the existing city in the next few years. Urhahn has done several projects for client London Development Agency in order to find an answer for this task.


    Intensification in Seven South London Town Centres

    The study ‘Housing Intensification in Seven South London Town Centres’ (2009) investigates how we can respond the challenge of housing intensification using differentiated strategies to suit the physical diversity and different aspirations of London’s towns. Far from being about housing alone, these strategies also focus on employment areas, the public realm and social infrastructure investment. Three design scenarios were developed for each of the 7 case studies, based on a range of typological and land use assumptions – thus showing that very different choices can be made depending on local priorities and needs. The scenarios also investigated how we can respond to a series of thematic issues that affect much of outer London, and how planning and design obstacles could be overcome.


    TEN – North London Town Centre Enhancement

    The study ‘TEN – North London Town Centre Enhancement’ (2005) focused on finding ways to add more housing while improving the quality of town centers. We conducted design studies for ten locations as a means of illustrating the scope of potential town centre enhancement strategies.



    The design character of our approach is complementary to the usual formal and quantitative approach. The products were presented to all London Boroughs and were spread widely by Design for London.


    Download Town Centre Enhancement in North London and the accompanying Design Catalogue (Urhahn, 2005) or Town Centre Intensification in Seven South London Town Centres (Urhahn, 2009).


    Robin Buckle – project manager Design for London:

    “I have found Urhahn to be a joy to work with; they have been stimulating in their exploration of the study topic, rigorous in their thought processes and analysis and clear in the presentation of conclusions and recommendations. They bring a European dimension to the work, adding value through their broad ranging European experience.”