A new park has been created on the Greenwich Peninsula, south of Peninsula Square and the Gateway Pavilions which house Knight Dragon's Central Marketing Hub and the new eateries Craft London and Greenwich Kitchen.
The three-acre Peninsula Garden has been created by Tom Dixon’s interior design practice Design Research Studio in collaboration with gardener Alys Fowler and Thomas Hoblyn Landscape Architects. Peninsula Garden was launched in May 2015 during the first Urban Village Fete.
The design of the park features a series of landscaped mounds disected by a main walkway composed of granite pathing, which leads towards new developments on the south-west of the Greenwich Peninsula. The park includes a new amphitheater, the design of which reflects basalt columns of Giant's Causeway.
The new park has been shortlisted for the 2015 Society of Garden Designers (SGD) Award, which is judged by respected experts from the Industry including designers, academics, journalists and horticultural professionals.
The first park to be created in London in one hundred years, Peninsula Gardens has been designed to be inherently resilient whilst inviting park users to engage through the use of edible species where there will always be something ripe to pick. It will be managed by a head gardener, a permanent guardian of the space who will interpret how the park is used into the planting. The history of the site is celebrated in the different layers of the design. The land forms take inspiration from the fact that this would have once been covered in rivulets as it was part of the London flood plain. Gradually alders would have inhabited the area, and are used heavily in the planting scheme. Soon the peninsula became a market garden represented through the edible species and finally the industrial period is seen in the hard elements - blackened timber representing pre-war coal tar production --- Tom Dixon's Design Research Studio
Planted in the garden are edible species such as apple trees and wild herbs, as well as boxes for bee keeping. There are a number of small buildings towards the south of the park, including a gardener's shed. Another of the buildings is intended as a smoke house, which will compliment the fresh produce supplied from the garden to the nearby Craft London restaurant.
Greenwich Peninsula's magazine, The Peninsula - Edition 1, introduces the new garden:
Open spaces provide an ideal rough-and-tumble stomping ground for children to play, while a market garden provides an idyllic spot to relax. Inspired by the geometry of the ancient Giant's Causeway, an amphitheatre provides a year-round platform for theatre, music, performance and cinema. Although the garden has only recently put down roots, it already has the feeling of an established, wild landscape.
Planning Application 14/1860/F for the gardens on plot N0405 was submitted by Knight Dragon in July 2014 and approved in the September, granting temporary change of use for up to 20 years of the existing coach parking loop to landscaped area with associated car parking. This application is an evolution of earlier plans granted to Meridian Delta in November 2012 (13/2006/F), which gave precedent for the development of Peninsula Garden. Drawings from the most recent application show the final designs for the Garden. Search for planning applications here.
Greenwich Peninsula Masterplan
Knight Dragon's proposed revisions to the Greenwich Peninsula Masterplan (2015) show that the Peninsula Garden is intended to be temporary, and will eventually be replaced by a new Design District. The lost green space will at least in part be made up for by the widening of Central Park.
The Design District aims to provide digital media and creative industries with flexible studio spaces in a mixed-use development. Buildings within the Design District will be limited to a height of five storeys to retain views of the O2 from the Central Park.