SEW Murphys Yard View 03

Murphy's Yard

2018 - Present

Scroll
Understanding the power of reconnecting communities within our cities.
Show info

Understanding the power of reconnecting communities within our cities.

Strategy

A disconnected site in the heart of Camden occupied by J. Murphy & Sons Ltd. for well over fifty years is now ready to be reimagined. Our plans for Murphy’s Yard will deliver a truly mixed use scheme that has the potential to complement and enhance Kentish Town, Gospel Oak, and other surrounding areas.

Location:
London, UK
Client:
Folgate Estates Limited
Role:
Urban Designer, Architect and Landscape Architect

By opening up a large locally significant industrial site to the public for the first time in centuries, our vision is to establish an industrial and residential led neighbourhood connecting Kentish Town to Gospel Oak and Hampstead Heath with a new multi-level piece of green urban infrastructure known as the Heath Line.

SEW Murphys Yard Disconnected Site
The current site has been occupied by J Murphy & Sons for over fifty years creating an impermeable industrial cluster that has caused three neighbourhood to become completely disconnected.
SEW Murphys Yard Historic 02
Historic images (above and below) show the area during the mid 1800's when The Midland Railway’s passenger engine depot occupied the expansive site between Kentish Town and Gospel Oak which would latterly become Murphy’s Yard.



The locally listed former railway sheds at the centre of the site establish a clear reference to the large scale rail infrastructure which historically informed the identity of Murphy’s Yard as the Midland Railways engine depot. The conjoined sheds are proposed to be retained in part, and their large scale footprints used to inform and define a critical mass of mixed-use space at the heart of the scheme.

SEW Murphys Yard Historic 01
SEW Murphys Yard Historic 03

In doing so, we intend to develop exemplar buildings that embrace the history and heritage of the area, as well as the potential of the future; offering sustainable new models of working and living.

SEW Murphys Yard View 10 Aerial
The vision for Murphy’s Yard is one of a characterful, playful and accommodating place for all; seeking to link existing communities through the provision of exceptional public realm, community space, workspace and a significant number of new homes.
SEW Murphys Yard View 06
The rejuvenated sheds will play pivotal roles within the framework, providing unique feature buildings drawing people into and through the site, and representing the catalysts for new life and activity through a mix of leisure and commercial activities.

Specificity

The scheme will deliver at least 750 new homes – with 35% affordable housing – as well as new office, industrial, healthcare and commercial spaces. Opening the site and warmly welcoming people in for the first time, the proposed framework for Murphy’s Yard will stitch into the surrounding urban grain and street structure, creating a more porous and inviting street network. New open spaces will complement the surrounding areas of Kentish Town and Gospel Oak, providing generous areas of public open space and green pedestrianised routes linking key transport nodes and local green spaces.

At the heart of the scheme new life will be brought in to the site’s heritage locomotive sheds. By retaining
and celebrating their historic fabric and industrial character the identity of the site is preserved.

Murphy’s Yard landscape and public realm strategy aims to reflect and compliment the surrounding context, taking inspiration from the ecological, historic and amenity spaces of Hampstead Heath.
Murphy’s Yard will become an extension of the Heath through the proposed ‘Heath Line’. The aims of the ‘Heath Line’ are to highlight and accentuate the found characteristics on the Heath and reflect them in an urban context within our site. The ‘Heath Line’ is based around three key objectives; ecology, heritage and places.

Incorporating key aspirations from the Kentish Town Planning Framework, the Heath Line will run the full length of the site, connecting Kentish Town to Hampstead Heath, whilst the start of the Makers Lane creative industries corridor, will additionally forge an important path through the scheme. These important routes offer access into and through the site with enhanced gateways amplifying the sense of arrival, as well as bridging new connections to the emerging development across the railway on the Regis Road site.

Heathline
The ‘Heath Line’ will form a green spatial sequence that stitches together Gospel Gate to Kentish Town Gateway.

Sustainability

The framework aspires to create a zero emission zone, with new open spaces, areas of biodiversity, and energy efficient buildings all connect to and enhancing the area’s existing green infrastructure and encouraging new green infrastructure by providing areas of open public space which complement the existing landscape fabric. The landscape will incorporate Sustainable Urban Drainage strategy (SUDs) to manage surface water runoff and attenuation across the site, providing a water source for the irrigation of ecologically biodiverse planting along the Heathline.

Generous areas of planted landscape supporting biodiverse heathland species are provided across the site. The planting strategy provides a direct connection between key transport links and green spaces in the area, with the site envisaged as an extension of Hampstead Heath.

Heathline 1
Murphy’s Yard is more than just the name of this scheme, it is a cluster of industrial buildings surrounding a working yard which intersects the Heath Line.
Heathline 2
Murphy’s Yard is more than just the name of this scheme, it is a cluster of industrial buildings surrounding a working yard which intersects the Heath Line.
Heathline 3
Murphy’s Yard is more than just the name of this scheme, it is a cluster of industrial buildings surrounding a working yard which intersects the Heath Line.
Heathline 4
Murphy’s Yard is more than just the name of this scheme, it is a cluster of industrial buildings surrounding a working yard which intersects the Heath Line.
Heathline 5
Murphy’s Yard is more than just the name of this scheme, it is a cluster of industrial buildings surrounding a working yard which intersects the Heath Line.
SEW Murphys Yard View 05
The Heath Cliff represents the point of transition between the site’s industrial and workplace character of Murphy’s Yard in the east, and it’s residential community to the west. A trio of taller buildings emerge from the landscape representing long range wayfinding markers to draw people into the site, whilst crowning the scheme’s distinctive addition to the surrounding skyline.
Team