7N have been engaged by Fife Council to develop a masterplan for the the redevelopment of Fraser Avenue, Inverkeithing, and working with Kingdom Housing Association, have brought forward detailed proposals to deliver an initial phase of 53 affordable homes.
Fraser Avenue is a mid 20th Century housing estate in Inverkeithing, Fife, currently one of the most disadvantaged areas in the country. The designs have developed as a result of extensive dialogue with existing residents and the local community, undertaken in collaboration with Fife Council. In acknowledging the failed model of 3-storey flats currently occupying the site, the proposals seek to transform the area, creating an integrated and cohesive new place that is woven into the existing fabric of the wider area. Inspired by the principles established by Ebenezer Howard’s Garden City Movement, and the little known Rosyth Garden City less than a mile away, the development will provide lower density, comfortable, secure new terraced homes for existing residents with private front and back gardens, well planned open space within easy walking distance and open tree-lined public streets.
The designs utilise a simple contemporary language of high quality, robust buildings and materials for both the new dwellings and the public realm. Whilst acknowledging an authentic new language for the buildings, the use of a limited palette of brick colours reference the existing fabric of 1930s housing at Spittalfield to the west and 1980s housing at Spencerfield to the east. The roof forms are both a response to the topography of the site, integrating steps in the floor levels of the terraces, and a device to unify the varying storey heights of the different unit types within cohesive built forms.
With valuable input from Rankin Fraser Landscape Architecture and Scott Bennett Associates, careful consideration has been paid to the public realm to address the poorly defined spaces that have contributed to the decline of the area in recent years. The designs create a safe, comfortable and enjoyable place to live, with materials that are robust and easy to maintain. Integrated public art work is proposed across the site that traces the line of the former Halbeath Colliery Railway across the site.
Through a considered design approach the reciprocal relationship between the new terraced houses; the choice and use of materials; the integration of landscaping to streets and open space; and the connection to sunlight and views, will contribute to an enhanced sense of community where residents take ownership of their built environment.