The area around Abbey Wood station suffers from significant socio-economic deprivation which is paralleled by problems within the urban fabric; a legacy of its colonisation by a series of utopian social housing projects – including the Thamesmead Estate – which has created monocultures of housing, physical severance, and an excess of low quality public space. The arrival of Crossrail, with Abbey Wood becoming the south eastern terminus of the line, presents an opportunity to radically change the perception and quality of the area.
5th Studio were commissioned, as part of a multi-disciplinary team, to investigate the integration and impact of the new Crossrail station. 5th Studio’s role was to prepare an urban design framework and public realm strategy for the station catchment area to ensure that the benefits were maximised for existing and new residents. Steering interventions which should be responsive to both the existing problems within the urban environment, and the potential scale of developmental change that will be catalysed by the arrival of Crossrail.
Our work on the project encompassed both public realm strategies, within the immediate environs of the station and further afield, as well as an exploration of the development opportunities within the area.