Restored building provides exciting new council home
The successful restoration of the historic engine sheds has created an innovative business location for council staff and visitors.
The former railway station site, Fletton Quays, presented a number of planning challenges that have prevented development over the years. On the banks of the River Nene, the site’s constraints include flood risk, ecology, heavy contamination, highways issues, drainage and a 132Kv cable.
A key challenge to the development of the site were the grade II listed Victorian rail sheds. The developers, Bride Hall, were determined to preserve the city’s heritage as part of the scheme. As such the railway sheds have been incorporated into the council office space, and form a welcoming gateway for council visitors.
The Old Engine Sheds
While on site, Bride Hall uncovered many issues with the railway sheds and an enormous level of renovation and rebuilding was required. Each step was agreed collaboratively, in close partnership with the council’s planning and conservation representatives, which helped achieve swift permissions and avoided delays. Frequent contact with the conservation officer was critical in agreeing design, conservation and restoration strategies as the various areas of the building fabric were uncovered or opened up.
Carefully selected materials are used on the building facades and aesthetic touches have been added in the public realm, including incorporating railway tracks in the paved areas and retaining a train turntable effect in a landscaped area.
The Old Engine Sheds now provide an exceptional place to work for its new occupants: Peterborough City Council. The whole scheme delivers 21st century standards while retaining a listed building. The public realm embodies both the aspirations of the Fletton Quays redevelopment and the site’s unique history.