Stratford: How London's Olympics district became its most exciting residential area
The Chobham Farm Masterplan is a new neighborhood creating over 1,000 homes in one of London's best-connected districts.
The London 2012 Olympics may be a distant memory as the world looks forward to Tokyo 2020, but its impact is still being felt in parts of the UK capital that were revitalized by unprecedented levels of investment in buildings and infrastructure. None more so than Stratford – formerly a run-down industrial area in the East End, now one of London's most sought-after residential districts.
Investment in Stratford may have been motivated by the Olympics, but the popularity of this emerging residential area has seen investment continue to increase in the years following the events, forecast to reach £22 billion by 2025. The arrival of the high-speed Crossrail service in 2019 is expected to drive up demand and prices even further from buyers and renters looking for well-connected property at more affordable prices than Central London.
Along with the conversion of purpose-built Olympics venues such as the Athletes Village into rental property, over 1,000 new homes are being constructed in Stratford under the Chobham Farm Masterplan to meet this growing demand. With an emphasis on larger family homes and building a safe community, the masterplan is already underway with the construction of New Stratford Works, a collection of exclusive apartments and villas developed by Higgins Homes that offers convenient access to Stratford Station, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and the Westfield shopping center.
New Stratford Works pays tribute to the area's industrial heritage as a hub of locomotive building in the 19th century. The closing of the London Docks in the 1960s saw Stratford fall into a period of decline, but plans to reinvigorate this strategically located district began as early as 1997.
By the time summer 2012 arrived, Stratford was described by The London Evening Standard as “this city’s most exciting corner,” replete with eye-catching architecture including the London Aquatics Centre, the 20,000-seat Golf Ball events venue and the ArcelorMittal Orbit, the largest sculpture in the UK.
As well as offering convenient access to Central London and Canary Wharf for commuters, Stratford is also creating employment opportunities of its own. The Here:East complex has converted the former Olympic Park media center into 1.2 million square feet of office space and is also the home of Plexal, a workspace designed to support startups and growing businesses. The nearby International Quarter is expected to add another four million square feet of office space and to support around 25,000 jobs when it opens next year.
Building a community
With over 1.8 million square feet of retail and leisure space at Westfield Stratford City, schools and health facilities at the Olympic Village, world-class universities within easy reach and one of the largest urban parks in Western Europe on the doorstep, Stratford ticks all the boxes for 21st century urban living. From Stratford Station, journey times are just 8 minutes to Canary Wharf and less than 20 minutes to the City and London City Airport.
New Stratford Works is located at the center of the Chobham Farm Masterplan, adjacent to the new Linear Park and just a few minutes' walk from the station, Westfield and Queen Elizabeth Park. Its stylish apartments and villas will be spread across two buildings – Parkside East and Parkside West – linked by landscaping and sculptured woodland to create a peaceful sanctuary in the new community.
Inside, each spacious residence will maximize natural light and airflow with open-plan layouts, large windows and a private balcony or terrace, as well as hotel-style bathrooms and fully-fitted kitchens with integrated appliances. A number of one, two and three-bedroom apartments and villas are now available for overseas property buyers, with prices starting from £418,000 (HKD 4.27 million).
21–23 September 2018 (Fri–Sun)
Tian & Di Room, 7/F, Landmark Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 15 Queen's Road Central, Central, Hong Kong