Master planning the future city

De Markthal Rotterdam by MVRDV Architects (Image: Rotterdam Partners)

What does it take to create sustainable master plans for our cities and districts and what is the range of expertise involved to create sustainable plans that are flexible enough to accommodate development over the life of these projects? At our March forum being held at the Architectural Association, we hear from different master planners involved in development our UK cities and new towns as well as architects designing city plans in Europe and beyond.

Post-Brexit, the UK will be competing with other European cities for the best environments to attract workforce talent, with housing, schools, medical facilities, retail and entertainment as part of this mix.

In East London, Stratford City is a mixed use development on former railway land, intersected by High Speed 1 and is being developed as two parcels of land linked by a number of bridges. Developments include a large residential area, Europe's largest single retail development, an area for commercial offices and numerous hotels, community facilities and open spaces. Environmental specialists from Arup have contributed technical advice on a wide range of issues such as energy, sustainability, daylight and wind engineering. The firm has also provided master planning, infrastructure design and transport planning. Robust environmental mitigation strategies were identified while retaining enough flexibility to allow for change over the estimated 15 - 20 year development.

As master planner and architect, Sheppard Robson is taking a leading role - alongside Studio Egret West - in the design of the next stage of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (QEOP). The East Wick and Sweetwater project will provide approximately 1500 new homes - 30% of which are affordable - to create new residential-led neighbourhoods of a high architectural quality that feel connected to the surrounding communities and amenities. The scheme provides new vistas to the Olympic Velodrome and explores the opportunity to forge stronger links between Canal Park and Queen Elizabeth Park, encouraging people into the new development.

When we launched our Future Ci