Free Wharf

Location Shoreham-by-Sea
Client Southern Housing Group
Content 540 Residential Units (30% Affordable) | 2,774m² Commercial
Status Planning Granted

CZWG is a practice full of creative designers with real ambition. They have an obvious commitment to delivering quality projects but are anchored by their knowledge and experience of project delivery. During the planning process, the team demonstrated high levels of flexibility and pragmatism, especially during the public consultation stages.

Jeremy Barkway, Regional Development Manager, Southern Housing Group

For more information on this project please contact Eion Curtis.

Free Wharf is a major new mixed-use scheme on the site of a disused wharf east of the Shoreham-by-Sea town centre. The scheme kick-starts the Council’s vision for a residential driven redevelopment that provides access to the River Adur along the full length of its Western Harbour Arm, stretching from east of the town centre towards the harbour entrance and the sea. Free Wharf is comprised of 10 new buildings, ranging from four to nine storeys, angled to maximise water views for all residents while offering enticing glimpses of the river when viewed from Brighton Road. CZWG collaborated with landscape architect Allen Pyke Associates to design an extensive public realm integrated into the new flood defences with a cantilevered riverside walk and cycleway. The accessibility of the scheme, including the gardens, play areas, pontoons and river viewing platform, was central to this design concept.

The riverside buildings are each clad in different coloured ceramic brick slips, a material chosen for its resemblance to traditional brick and its weathering and robustness qualities. The buildings facing Brighton Road are characterised by horizontal bands of dark blue and black ceramic brick slips running through predominantly white elevations - inspired by the bands of flints, a Sussex construction material, seen in chalk cliffs on the Sussex coast.

Curtain walling and timber are used at ground level throughout to form a visual “plinth” to the upper storeys and visually link the ground floor uses with the landscape. The curtain walling brings plenty of light and prominence to the commercial units for passers-by and traffic. While large vertical timber panels inspired by the history of Shoreham, are used to enclose and screen private amenity spaces, parking, plant and bin stores and create “groyne” like wind breaks.

The use of BIM technology early during the design process was key to communicating the vision for the project with planning officers, local councillors and the wider public. The enhanced visualisation capabilities of Revit and Enscape allowed the team to rapidly create rich project imagery, both static and moving, and show any number of different viewpoints of the fully rendered model.