In the near-two decades since we founded Native Land we have seen London, along with other towns and cities, change in ways which have placed increased demands on space and place.
As much as the urban landscape has changed, so we too have evolved. Native Land has gone from a developer exclusively in London’s prime residential market to operating in the mixed-use arena, delivering sustainable, large-scale master-planned projects and individual buildings in towns and cities around the UK.
Our new report, Towards Hypermixity: Exploring the Future of Urban Mixed Use, draws on Native Land’s experience in creating high-quality, amenity-rich living in prime residential buildings, and our strategy of combining homes, workspace, shops, restaurants, hotels and open space at major London developments, such as the 1.4 million sq ft Bankside Yards scheme on London’s south bank.
We interviewed a panel of eight leading urban thinkers to contribute their ideas on the potential for Hypermixity – our thanks to Midori Ainoura of PLP; Prof. Yolande Barnes, of the Bartlett Real Estate Institute, Stuart Croucher of Mott Macdonald, Angus Goswell of Knight Frank, Itai Paliti of Hume, Jim Pool of DP9, Mike Stiff of Stiff+Trevillion Architects, and Lisa Taylor of Coherent Cities.
The report focuses in on ten key themes:
A new idea: Mixed use is relatively new to the UK. Policies, investment culture, land ownership arrangements, and perceived market demand may not be fully aligned to achieve more creative mixed use applications.
Politics: The planning system has historically mirrored investment habits that tended to prefer large single-use allocations. Hypermixity would benefit from reform that allows for greater flexibility and sui-generis “in-between uses” while supporting the principles of good place making.
Time: Time management is a crucial aspect of mixed use – specifically its potential to create the opportunity to use urban spaces more efficiently and for a broader range of activities.
People: Mixed use has the potential to create more entry points for local communities to engage positively with new development, while expanding the amenity offer to tenants and new users.
Creativity: The knowledge economy benefits from the tight clustering of creative ideas. Mixed use can support creative uses that attract knowledge workers.
Blurring: We’re seeing mixed use on the scale of a single building, with new brands and products that reduce the distinction between uses, for example co-living developments that blur the lines between homes, offices, and hotels.
Wellbeing: Mixed use design can enable creative uses for both indoor and outdoor spaces, and harness the relationship between internal and external, in order to support healthy lifestyles and promote wellbeing.
Nature: Mixed use creates new viewpoints for evaluating the potential for natural features to play a role in creating amenity and deliver distinctive places.
Climate: Could mixed use allow for less intense travel patterns and more efficient building typologies, such as estate-wide energy solutions that reduce the climate impact of development and protect against the risk of obsolescence?
Scale: Many of London’s leading examples of mixed-use development benefit from large campuses able to accommodate a wide range of amenities. How do we integrate mixity at a finer scale and away from central districts?
We hope that Towards Hypermixity is the beginning of many conversations about the future of our towns and cities and we’d like to invite you to join us – get in touch to request a copy of the report [firstname.lastname@example.org]