Developing the Vision into a Place

Using our Vision, we have focused upon five key placemaking themes to inspire our masterplan and demonstrate what Watermill Bridge could look like in reality.

1. A Strong Sense of Place
The vision set out above will underpin the unique local identity of the place which draws from its landscape, its architecture, street types and building heights. A strong sense of place and connection to that place will provide residents with a sense of identity, pride and belonging.

Watermill Bridge will be a unique place with a rich landscape heritage. It will have a distinct and unique sense of place which will be local to its context.

It will be inspired by the historic context of its landscape and we will translate this into a place which is suitable for the 21st century.

We will draw on its unique landscape character to create individual places which are rooted within their setting. The key neighbourhood centre and community facilities will contribute to a strong sense of community.

The village will also benefit from community-led stewardship, with ownership and management of public assets and important spaces being led by the community.

This will allow the future residents at Watermill Bridge to shape the future of their community, and to create a place which they are proud to live in.

2. Landscape
Watermill Bridge will be a landscape led development.

The key existing natural elements, such as the River Enborne and its banks, the mature trees, the hedgerows, and the riverbanks, will be preserved within a development which co-exists with nature.

It will respect the existing wildlife and natural habitats, and sustainably manage water on the site through sustainable drainage and wetlands.

The existing and newly created green spaces will embrace the topography, existing trees and vegetation, wet spaces including wetlands, ponds and swales, and the biodiversity they contain will flow through Watermill Bridge connecting the open spaces to be enjoyed by the people who live, play and work there.

A range of habitats, both existing and developed, will provide woodland, woodland edge, open land and meadow landscapes across the site weaving community allotments, orchards and rain gardens together.

3. Design
Design describes the way that buildings and places are planned to influence the way that they look and function.

Watermill Bridge will draw from the character of the villages around to inform and support its development with its own unique design and character that builds upon and highlights the existing landscape features present within it. This theme refers not just to the way that the place looks, but also to the way that the place functions. As well as providing up to 350 new homes the development will provide community facilities and new public spaces to create a self-sustaining community.

Each of these spaces, and the relationships, edges and spaces between them, will need to be carefully designed to create a balanced and sustainable place. The way that buildings look will draw upon their functions and uses, as well as drawing on the qualities of their setting as one of Basingstoke’s villages.

The design of Watermill Bridge will create functional, beautiful, and locally distinctive spaces which accommodate the needs of all users.

4. Sustainable Movement
Sustainable movement refers to the modes of transportation within the site and to other places, and will prioritise active and environmentally friendly travel.

The development will encourage healthy lifestyles and well-being, and help create an inclusive community. As such, sustainable transport is one of the key considerations for the development.

Walking, cycling and public transportation should be the main modes of transportation used by the residents, while car travel should only be occasional, and make use of car clubs and electric vehicles.

The street network will need to provide safe and accessible footpaths and cycle lanes which will encourage active travel. Additionally, public transport should be efficient with bus stops within short walking distances to homes.

The proposed road network will establish a sustainable hierarchy of transport modes and will identify a set of movement and transportation considerations, including street widths and parking strategies.

A transport network which prioritizes active travel and provides high quality public transportation should be provided from the onset of the delivery stages in order to establish sustainable travel patterns amongst the first residents.

5. A Forward Thinking Place
A forward thinking development is a place which looks to the future to create a place which is guided by technological advances to enhance the residents’ way of life and allow spaces to be adaptable and resilient to climate change.

Watermill Bridge will be a forward-thinking development. It will integrate some of the latest innovation and technology to create a sustainable and environmentally friendly place with longevity for future generations.

Watermill Bridge will be a development which produces very low levels of carbon, minimises energy use and supports renewable energy. High quality materials, innovative building design and smart control systems will help to manage energy use sustainably across the development.

The development will also facilitate intergenerational living and will include homes which are suitable for all stages of peoples’ lives.

All aspects of the development will need to contribute to creating a forward thinking place, through sustainable building design, land uses, and sustainable movement.

Site Boundary Plan