First glimpse of fresh plans for £775m overhaul of Paddington, after Skinny Shard scrapped

14th September 2016

Plans have been submitted for a £775 million development on the Royal Mail and post office site in Paddington after a public backlash resulted in original proposals being scrapped.

The Paddington Quarter is the new proposal planned for the plot of land near the historic station after proposals for Paddington Place, which was dubbed the Skinny Shard, were withdrawn.

A planning application for the new development has been entered to Westminster City Council by Great Western Developments (GWD) and its development partner Sellar Paddington Limited (SPL), with a decision on approval expected in December.

GWD and SPL say they have worked with the community to address concerns, chief of which was the height of the Skinny Shard, which would have stood 72 storeys tall.

The new proposal for the cube-shaped office building stands much lower at 14 stories.

Their scheme has also received the backing of transport organisations Network Rail, Transport for London and London Underground.

The development is designed by the internationally renowned Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW). The 54m3 (360,000 sq ft) office building will 12m above 1.35 acres of newly created public realm.

It will see a new public piazza at the front of Paddington Station created through the pedestrianisation of London Street, with the road relocating to the north eastern side of GWD’s site to alleviate congestion at its junction with Praed Street.

However, this plan may change superseded and improved upon by collaborating with St Mary’s Hospital to secure the delivery of its preferred master plan access arrangements.

If given the green light by Westminster planners, the Paddington Quarter development will accommodate more than 4,000 new jobs for Paddington and include 80,000 sq ft of retail and restaurant space over five levels, including a rooftop restaurant.

As with the original project, a total of £65m is being invested in public realm and major transport infrastructure improvements.

The scheme will also provide a new Bakerloo line station and ticket hall to reduce the daily crowding and congestion experienced by commuters.

These improvements are seen as vital with annual passenger numbers at Paddington expected to rise more than 60% to 60 million people over the next 15 years.

Following the outcry caused by the Skinny Shard development, which was also dubbed Paddington Pole, developers have worked with residents and stakeholders , where preference was made for a lower-rise building together with a range of amenities and vastly improved transport connectivity.

Irvine Sellar, Chairman of SPL, said: “We are pleased to submit our revised plans for Paddington after months of public consultation. RPBW is a world-class architect and the design provides a commercially viable building that will deliver real change for the area.

“Paddington serves as an international gateway to London and our scheme provides both an elegant building and much needed new public space that will become a destination in its own right.

“We believe our plans will deliver significant improvements for the area surrounding Paddington Station and provide a catalyst for local retail, business and leisure to thrive.”

If you are interested in office space around Paddington, please call Gryphon Property Partners on 0203 440 9800 or click on the following link - Office