As retail and commercial architects, we have often been asked to work with difficult sites where a standard retail or commercial solution has been unacceptable. We commonly meet and work with Planning Officers and / or Conservation Officers across the West Midlands to create or refurbish a building that is individual to the site but still meets the needs of the client or developer.
By way of example, we were engaged by Lidl to design a new store on the site of a former car dealership in Sutton Coldfield. Lidl had previously submitted a planning application for their standard store but had not been able to achieve consent.
We took the Lidl standard store and redesigned the principal elevation to the main road to help the store sit better within the local context. The rest of the store remained largely as the standard specification, albeit material more in keeping with the local area were selected to further integrate the building in to its surroundings. We have also undertaken work for the Construction Office, in particular working up tender information for new build and refurbishment projects.
Another of our projects as retail and commercial architects involved refurbishing a scheme in Moseley. These buildings consisted of a mixture of shops and offices, all in a very poor state of repair caused by lacking maintenance and neglect. Located in the heart of Moseley Village and the Moseley conservation area, the brief for this project was a mixture of new build residential and conversion, and also retail space for Sainsbury’s in addition to office space.
In a more rural scheme, Chase Homes commissioned us to design the redevelopment of the former Gordon Russell Works set in the beautiful Cotswold village of Broadway. The design evolved through considerable consultation with the local planning authority and English Heritage, given the complexity of the site, and its location in a conservation area and an AONB. The mixed use development included retail, commercial and residential accommodation including the design of a Budgens store located around a new town square.
At Quorn Grange Hotel in the East Midlands, we designed a new extension to this popular hotel, as well as a contemporary new nursery, mewshouses and refurbished an office block to make sure that Quorn Grange can carry on its fantastic educational work well into the future.
At Longford Marina, near Coventry, our brief was to design a use for a patch of unused land that was problematic for the local community – to which end we designed a 225-berth marina and light industrial park, providing employment, housing and leisure for the local community.
We also worked on refurbishing the prestigious Michelin-starred restaurant Simpsons, creating a new orangery for diners, as well as staff and guest accommodation in this listed building in Edgbaston – one of our most impressive and visible projects.
From these projects, you can see that our experience in retail and commercial architecture has focussed on mid-scale mixed-use developments in suburban and semi-rural settings as a sustainable way to improve and integrate the different needs residents, workers and developers have. These complex projects are a real test of our expertise and knowledge, but have given us a fantastic portfolio of work.
If you have a commercial or retail project in the West Midlands that you’re looking to get off the ground, come to Lapworth Architects. Give us a call on 0121 455 0032 and see how we can help you get a fantastic return on your investment.
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We are award-winning architects working across the entire West Midlands to help you at every step of the process, whether you’re needing an extension, developing land or designing a new build house.
– Sutton Coldfield