Cowick Street named ‘Development of the Year’ at British Homes Awards

14th October 2020
Cowick Street named ‘Development of the Year’ at British Homes Awards

Cowick Street in Exeter has been named Development of the Year (under £10m) at the British Homes Awards 2020.

The ceremony celebrates excellence in British homebuilding honouring every aspect from one-off houses to major developments across categories ranging from interiors to landscaping, and individual extensions to placemaking on a grand scale.

Cowick Street is a mixed-use development for First Urban Group which comprises 244sqm of commercial space and a mix of two one-bed flats, four duplex apartments and five courtyard houses.

British Homes Awards judges commented:

Nice use of space and courtyard, thinking about community. Good use of the old site; maximised the number of units. Good layouts and a comfortable mix of homes.

Set within a conservation area and surrounded by two and three storey buildings, this was a challenging site.

After trialling various configurations, we developed the best site layout with retail frontage along Cowick Street and apartments above with access from a courtyard behind.

Unlocking the potential of the courtyard was key to the scheme’s success. A series of mews houses run along the NE boundary and face into a courtyard with a planting strategy implemented by our Landscape team to balance with the hard surface treatments and building mass.

Given that the Local Planning Authority would not support single aspect dwellings, we introduced novel ‘light tubes’ at the back of the houses to bring natural light into the kitchen and dining areas located at the back.

To provide the necessary area of amenity space, all the mews houses have access to a sizeable roof terrace – these spaces have been embraced by the residents and contain planting, seating and BBQs. A communal ‘pocket park’ is located to the west of the site for use by all the residents.

Director and Head of Residential, Dominic Eaton commented on the win:

The whole team is delighted that the BHA have recognised and rewarded our efforts to design and deliver something ‘special’ on this site. The BHA attracts entries of the very best schemes throughout the country, and we are honoured to be amongst such excellent company.

You can view all of British Homes Awards 2020 winning schemes here

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