PRP appointed to design outline planning for Pydar

Leading UK architecture firm PRP has been appointed by Cornwall Council to design the outline planning proposal for the regeneration of the Pydar neighbourhood in Truro. The ambitious redevelopment is one of the council’s most significant projects within its investment programme, and will create a vibrant, characterful and sustainable new community based on local aspirations, while providing 500 new jobs and strengthening the local economy.

Based on community-participation and collaboration, PRP is developing the design with the local council and stakeholders to complement Truro’s existing offer and meet the needs of local residents and tourists. Extending from the River Allen up to Pydar Street and from the Viaduct down towards the Cathedral approach, the scheme on the four hectare site will regenerate the existing commercial and industrial area with 300 new homes, innovative work and learning spaces, an exciting riverside park and a range of engaging leisure, hospitality and cultural facilities.

Manisha Patel, Senior Partner at PRP, said,

“While working closely with all parties we have found that there is a genuine desire to reconnect and reintegrate this neighbourhood with the wider community. Our aim is to build upon these aspirations and the need to transform this unique part of Truro, which has become industrialised, into a new hub for the local residents and visitors through new amenities, attractive public spaces and a stronger night-time economy.”

In the first in a series of stakeholder engagement events, locals were invited to ‘Discover Pydar’ and find out more about the mixed-use development that will connect the market town’s historic core with the River Allen and a Victorian railway overpass to create a new vibrant leisure quarter for Truro. Over 150 people from the local community attended and gave their views on the emerging proposals.

Councillor Bob Egerton, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning and Economy said,

“It was fantastic to see so many people keen to help shape the vision for this key site in Truro. We need the community to say how it wants Pydar Street to evolve and I would like to thank everyone who gave up their time to come and talk to members of the team and share their ideas.”

The new neighbourhood is set to become a valuable asset to the community with new civic, leisure, education and media hubs. Plans comprise a diverse range of accommodation, including multi-generation housing, student apartments and a hotel. Proposed public amenities are set to include a The Hive, a digitally focused and entrepreneurial new innovative learning and living environment for Falmouth University that will help grow both a vibrant local community and Cornwall’s wider economy. Collaborative working space for start-ups, offices, a village hall, cafés and restaurants, a highline walk, nature trails, climbing walls and other sports facilities are also proposed.

To ensure that the new Pydar neighbourhood is sustainable and can be enjoyed by current and successive generations, an emphasis has been put on intergenerational living between students and older generations in particular. PRP is also developing design strategies for new affordable ways of living that promote social cohesion and shared experience.

PRP’s landscape team is exploring innovative designs for the public realm within the neighbourhood to create new and improved links to the city centre, local parks and the surrounding countryside. The plans will encourage the growing of food and flowers, which will draw wildlife from the parks and the River Allen into the community gardens and squares throughout the year. Socialising and playing is also at the core of the landscape design, with street furniture designed to be climbed and balanced on.

The planning proposals will be submitted for outline planning consent in late 2019.