Old Acre Road, Hampshire

Project Winner


Format Milton


Format Milton


Not yet appointed

Planning Authority

East Hampshire District Council

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Old Acre Road, in the centre of the Hampshire town of Alton, is a narrow street with a terrace of two-storey houses on one side built up to the footpath and on street parking in front of them. Replacing vacant industrial buildings on the opposite side of the street raised issues of overlooking and car parking.

This design responds by staggering a row of eight 2.5 storey villas. Spaces between become courtyard gardens to the back of the site and, on the street frontage, bays for 12 cars in the set backs. The homes are predominantly single aspect and laid out perpendicular to the street so that windows omit overlooking issues.

Doors onto the street and windows, typically from kitchen and at ground floor and bathroom at first floor restore some surveillance, with the opposite side of the road already providing plenty.

The single aspect houses allow light into stairwells with roof lights. Three 3-double bed units to the back of the rectangular site have a void between ground floor and the ridge of the roof allowing light to flood down from a second roof light, with a window from the room-in-the-roof bedroom into the void for borrowed daylight. These units also have a study. The more compact pair of houses on the street frontage are 2-bed.

One end of the site backs onto a car wash and behind that a petrol station. To deal with the noise from the car wash, the design converts the last two villas into self-contained small offices. Between the offices and the five houses there are two more connected villas, one two storey, one three, jointly containing five apartments. These are also mostly single aspect garden with the house adjacent screened from overlooking by the putting the stairwell to this side.

The buildings use weatherboarding, clay tiles and fair faced brick which extends to the high walls screening gardens from the street, where there are also discrete openings cut into them to allow glimpses out and some light in. Despite the sites restricting issues, the scheme promises high quality family homes in a town centre.

high quality homes in a town centre