James Grayley Architects

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Kitchen Garden Community

New Urban Self Build, London, 2014

Development of 20 dwellings for an assisted self-build housing co-operative

The Kitchen Garden City is an assisted self-build community built on the belief that the collective group is greater than the individual. This ethos shapes the design and development of the housing and landscape to create an ecologically and socially driven housing co-operative. The houses are conceived as a community, built by the community for self occupation. The dwellings have the same image, whether they be a four bedroom family dwelling or a single occupant flat and provide homes to community applicants irrespective of social background.

The houses are densely arranged in clusters to allow the landscape between to not only provide community space, but also allow for the creation of kitchen garden allotments for the growing of food for both the residents and the wider city through a social enterprise scheme.

A simple form generated by orientation, view and solar gain, allows the houses to be terraced into groups. By acting together as a group, ecological technologies can be implemented to serve all the houses which are not efficient or financially viable if conceived on an individual basis. A district ground source heat pump will deliver self-sufficient renewable energy to all the homes, along with grey water recycling and communal solar electricity production.