Issue 05 // MARCH 2014 Unlocking the Potential RT13041 Old School, Exton Street, London. SE1 8UE T | 020 7261 9577 E | studio@rocktownsend.co.uk W | www.rocktownsend.co.uk The Mawgan Porth Initiative www.mymawganporth.com
Issue 05    MARCH 2014  Unlocking the Potential  RT13041  Old School, Exton Street, London. SE1 8UE  T   020 7261 9577  E ...
2 Beyond the Horizon
2  Beyond the Horizon
RT13041 3 The Initiative 2.0 The Place 2.1 2.2 3.0 A History The Destination The Brief 3.1 3.2 Gauging the Appetite 3.3 Community Engagement 3.4 4.0 Unlocking the Potential Is it time? Evaluation 4.1 4.2 5.0 Site Analysis Design Objectives Ideas to serve as a catalyst 5.1 How might it work - Reclaim The Streets 5.2 How might it work - Inhabit The Spaces 6.0 The Design Initiatives 7.0 Sketchbook 8.0 Local Engagement Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative 1.0
RT13041  3  The Initiative  2.0  The Place 2.1 2.2  3.0  A History The Destination  The Brief 3.1 3.2  Gauging the Appetit...
1.0 The Initiative 4 ‘Beyond the Horizon’ is the working title for proposals for Mawgan Porth. This piece of the Cornish coast has for some time come to represent the consequences of planning blight when circumstances combine as is the case in multi-ownership implications and a lack of coordinated effort to a piece of townscape to recover. This is the first meaningful attempt to assemble proposals that represent a change towards a better, safer and effective centre. The report is set out as a series of influences that need to be combined and reviewed against any design of propositions. It needs to be remembered that this is a proposal to establish a way of encouraging change against a background where the opinion is generally suggested to leave things as they are. The following sections review the intentions to influence the process of change; they are draft pieces of analysis to be developed in concert with the client sponsors, the community of people who might get involved, the local authority, statutory agencies and local neighbours. The result established from consultation experience is to start ‘the story’ of the proposals and provide a guide to the programme and stages of evolution of the idea. It’s about establishing an attitude for committing to change.
1.0  The Initiative  4     Beyond the Horizon    is the working title for proposals for Mawgan Porth. This piece of the Co...
RT13041 5 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative “Planning is NOT Big Architecture... ..it’s about making things happen”
RT13041  5 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative     Planning is NOT Big Architecture... ..it   s about making things ...
2.0 The Place 6 Set within 3 miles of Cornwall Newquay Airport, the coastal village of Mawgan Porth sits between the well established towns of Padstow to the north and Newquay to the south. With its neighbouring villages Mawgan Porth forms the area referred to as Newquay and St Columb, an area that also includes significant historic sites, ancient monuments and historic landscapes. The majority of the village sits on the north side of the River Menalhyl with homes and buildings set up on the hill stretching north towards Trenance. The village centre of shops, village hall, car park and public house straddles the river and fronts the main road (B3276), beach and sand dunes. The former petrol station site and neighbouring buildings sit low in the landscape, set back from the road. This ‘hotchpotch’ of buildings are a shadow of their formers selves. Tired, wind swept and bland, they represent the heart of the place, the destination. They also represent an amazing opportunity to reinvigorate a place that is truly unique with spectacular scenery and potential. This initiative aims to be a holistic approach to the wider village centre and how changes could improve the sense of place however it does involve detailed studies and proposals for three of the main businesses in the village. ‘...the combined site of the bead shop, the supermarket and Betty’s surf shop is a highly prominent location that forms the ‘village centre’ of Mawgan Porth...’ UAY NEWQ AY ATE B ATERG W AN MAWG
2.0  The Place  6  Set within 3 miles of Cornwall Newquay Airport, the coastal village of Mawgan Porth sits between the we...
RT13041 7 Settlement Roads Beach Waterway Sea OW T PADS LUMB ST CO H T N POR Location plan: Mawgan Porth Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative View south towards the river bridge
RT13041  7  Settlement Roads Beach Waterway Sea  OW  T PADS  LUMB  ST CO  H  T N POR  Location plan  Mawgan Porth  Mawgan ...
2.1 A History of interventions The history of Mawgan Porth could reference the late Saxon heritage, the buried ruins of a settlement and Cornish names such as Dowr Melynheyl and Glyvion. All very important in preserving the past and understanding the place today, however it is the more recent history that is relevant to this initiative. The Cornish revival of recent years has been the coming together of circumstance and inevitablility. The dramatic Cornish landscape and its tranquil setting for tourists has seen Cornwall become the fashionable and convenient place to holiday and live. Its impact both negative and positive on the county can be argued over however change is happening and the area around Mawgan Porth has seen the benefits of this gravitation to the Cornish coast. Mawgan Porth has seen its neighbours, Watergate Bay, Newquay and Padstow become destinations beyond even their wildest estimations. That’s not to say this initiative aims to emulate this, far from it, the natural beauty of the place and its ‘remote’ feel is part of its charm. Much of Mawgan Porth was built in the 1950s and 60s, before then little existed. Now however there is a place but what is now needed is a village centre to be proud of, it is due an ‘upgrade’. 1969 19581932 8
2.1  A History  of interventions  The history of Mawgan Porth could reference the late Saxon heritage, the buried ruins of...
RT13041 9 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  9 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
2.2 The Destination 10 the car park is a ‘back of house’ experience and from the street the shops, their forecourt and the general experience is a tired and wind swept one. Residents and visitors alike need a better experience when in Mawgan Porth. The village needs to be a place to visit and a place worth remembering. With amazing beaches, surf and scenery Mawgan Porth can attract the bathers, surfers and walkers. It is also home to the local people who live and work in and around the village. Setting the bar high in hotel standards, The Scarlet opened in 2009 with stylish accommodation, excellent food and a service to match. For anyone else visiting the bay the offer is limited to what the shops provide and the public house serves. To the rear of the shops With the arrival of Fifteen in the spring of 2006, Watergate Bay has established itself on the map as a destination to rival other local areas. The expansive beach, the surf and the landscape has always been a draw but the improvements to the hotels, restaurants and other amenities has transformed a tired coastal resort into a much sought after location. Further afield Padstow has become recognisable nationally and internationally for its celebrity restaurateur. A business that has revolutionised the offer to tourism, creates employment and has bought opportunities to the town. Like in so many places in Cornwall, it is the coast, the sea and character of the place that bring people there. Servicing them and the people who live in and around there has changed with a more diverse offer. To the south, Newquay and St Ives continue to attract tourism and in doing so have created a sustainable industry to compliment the year round businesses that are continuing to expand and develop whether that be farming or technology companies.
2.2  The Destination  10  the car park is a    back of house    experience and from the street the shops, their forecourt ...
RT13041 11 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  11 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
3.0 The Brief 12 The brief at this stage should be aspirational and not directional. In other words it suggests the beginning of a new vision for the place. What is fundamental in the development of the brief is the skeleton of delivering a proposition that is sustainable and that each plan or study is made possible. This involves matching the funding climate with the proposals. There are many reasons why Mawgan Porth has become the way it is but there are two reasons that identify the place as remarkable (just look at the map); the beach and the surf. The site is principally to service that community. In making this possible it is fundamental that safety is paramount. This doesn’t happen at Mawgan Porth and the brief must consider a language and solution for linking the forecourt or public realm to the beach and to reduce the impact of the car. The second reason for the place is to service the community of surfers and users of the beach with basic provisions from toilets to cafes. The development of a proposal at this level suggests a market plan with special initiatives. Here is a proposition for taking things forward, whether it takes 2, 20 or 200 years, something will happen. Therefore some initiatives in the brief must be promoted ahead of others.
3.0  The Brief  12  The brief at this stage should be aspirational and not directional. In other words it suggests the beg...
RT13041 13 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  13 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
3.1 Unlocking the Potential 14 The principle proposition is to make the connection between why the site is there, the beach, the surf and the visitor. This is not about making grand gestures or comprehensive redevelopment, it is a matter of responding to the need for a safe and sustainable, thriving environment. Precedents exist to accomplish this through the notion of taking as a priority people on foot, i.e. making new arrangements for cars. The starting point therefore needs to address the landscape of the place: • • • • • Removing the conflict between people and traffic, putting cars ‘on the pavement’. Preventing parking on the frontage or organise into disciplined arrangements and limited in duration. Remove parking bays and introduce public areas and landscape. Consider methods to reduce vehicular access to frontage and car parking perhaps through relocation of access. Move business access to side entry road. This is the enabling phase to establish a significant surface where a major graphic footprint can be used as the destination signature for the place. This is the memorable thing that visitors and users will talk about, the priority of people and not cars. The single most absorbing reference for this proposal is the Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro which will be referenced through precedents. overcoming the obstacles
3.1  Unlocking the Potential  14  The principle proposition is to make the connection between why the site is there, the b...
RT13041 15 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  15 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
3.2 Gauging the Appetite goals and ambitions 16 A natural, organic process will establish the potential rather than the ‘inevitable’ being imposed. There is a genuine collaboration and buy-in from more than just those with a commercial interest. There are three fundamental processes involved in design philosophy which captures the way we communicate: Firstly, analysis and appraisal of the extrinsic qualities of the place and the way it behaves in the area, its relationship to its community, its history and any sense of intrinsic archaeology that represents how it feels; There needs to be an appropriate engagement to establish the principle of the proposals and establish if they are welcome and if there are other needs that may be need addressing. The potential scale of the ‘big idea’ will become apparent through this process of discussion, reaction and collaboration. Secondly, the lateral representation of the brief needs to convey any preconceptions any stakeholder might carry and it needs to be based on describing things using a vocabulary that doesn’t carry any baggage of convention about the way things are. The brief needs to recognise the influence of affordability and the commercial need to create a financial model that explores transformational change and able to make a difference. The briefing can happen in many ways; from the bottom up through an examination of how things work, sometimes through a visionary idea; And lastly, the challenge of making creative notions and our ability as designers to help make it happen is referred to as ‘the right stuff’. Not just delivering a design but more importantly adding the ‘feel good factor’.
3.2  Gauging the Appetite  goals and ambitions  16  A natural, organic process will establish the potential rather than th...
RT13041 1. IDEAS 4. MAKE 17 3. RESEarch 5. TEST 6. PRESent “If I look back on the road I have travelled, I realise that it was more difficult to me to discover the problems I had to resolve, than it was to solve them” - Charles Darwin Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative 2. DISCUSSION
RT13041  1. IDEAS  4. MAKE 17  3. RESEarch  5. TEST  6. PRESent     If I look back on the road I have travelled, I realise...
3.3 Community Engagement 18 to include all stakeholders through focus groups, workshops and presentations is the basis of an inclusive consultation with the proactive Parish Council. Other factors that need to be considered in relation to the brief are the sites effect on the Merrymoor public house and its ambitions as well as understanding how the car park will work and enhance the overall ambition of these initiatives. Further stakeholders that would need coordination are the Local Authority, Tourism, Cornwall Development Agency and Environmental Health. Planning and community liaison will be fundamental in reviewing and informing proposals. Early consultation with the Highway Authority will be needed for consideration of two principle concerns; firstly the bottle-neck at the bridge and narrowing of the road and secondly the crossing hazard from the beach to the amenities. The Environment Agency’s consideration about access to the flood defence infrastructure (understood to be a no build zone of 7m) and potential demands for flood improvements and potential safety matters related to any redevelopment. A series of engagements are needed to establish the acceptability of these initial ideas and the principle of investment into the village centre. Cementing the idea that anything done now needs Introductory meetings and presentations of the feasibility study have been presented to The Chief Executive Officer and Director of Tourism in 2012 with favourable reaction.
3.3  Community Engagement  18  to include all stakeholders through focus groups, workshops and presentations is the basis ...
RT13041 19 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  19 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
3.4 Is it Time? can it wait? 20 Engagement of everyone involved is key and clarity of the idea is paramount, and lack of understanding between the process and reality is why there may be resistance to proposal and change. Contradictory messages amongst stakeholders regarding priorities need exploration and resolve. It is worth remembering that when people are asked what they want a place to be like, they inevitably describe a version of what they have already. The next stage is making a major proposition through the pre-application process change. Implicit in this stage is the coordinated need to undertake an engagement process of involvement of all stake holders. This paper is the agenda for that to happen.
3.4  Is it Time   can it wait   20  Engagement of everyone involved is key and clarity of the idea is paramount, and lack ...
RT13041 21 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative the market place Phase 4 “If I had asked 20th century Americans what they wanted from the motor car, they would have asked for faster horses”
RT13041  21 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative  the market place  Phase 4     If I had asked 20th century Americans...
4.0 Evaluation 22 The site is currently blighted by the absence of any planning brief for improvement of the place and how it might contribute better to the nature of the place and to the local and county economy. FOCUS VIEW THE SITE STERS HOTEL It must also be recognised that there may be a reluctance on the part of some people who have no appetite to endorse anything that involves disruption to the status quo. THE SCARLET There is a growing concern amongst local businesses who have set up a forum to review changing circumstances and a sense that the public wish would be to see some improvement. WILDERNESS DUNES BEACH RIVER TRAFFIC
4.0  Evaluation  22  The site is currently blighted by the absence of any planning brief for improvement of the place and ...
RT13041 23 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  23 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
4.1 Site Analysis 24 “it strikes me...” the road is a barrier... ...there’s a large area that’s a ‘no man’s land’... ...the existing buildings are tired... ...there are ‘bottle necks’... ...the nodal points are isolated; and there’s a lot of ‘back-of-house’ experience.”
4.1  Site Analysis  24     it strikes me...     the road is a barrier...  ...there   s a large area that   s a    no man  ...
RT13041 25 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  25 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
4.2 Design Objectives... evaluation 1 26 2 The process, key performance and aspirations: 1. Improve connectivity with the beach Facilitate a masterplan or series of initiatives that are tolerant to change for an evolving seaside destination. 2. Serve local needs (shopping, leisure) Ensure what is proposed reflects the changing needs of local people and businesses as well as cater for the seasonal influx of visitors. It demonstrates a solution that makes sense and is understandable: is recognised as a village centre as well a tourist destination; There is an added value for everyone, and not just financial. It offers a community led approach where the community see the proposal as their own. 3. Improve tourist trade Celebrate the place and enhance it. Creating a sense of place, giving the village an identity, something to remember. The site is centre of the village, the heart is what everyone makes of it. 4. Enhance the village-scape and sense of place The proposal must accommodate the needs of the businesses driving the proposals 5. Enhance the landscape It must be sustainable. The very environment that make Mawgan Porth what it is, needs to be protected and enhanced; what is proposed must work year round for the community. It should also capture and reap the rewards of the Cornish tourism industry. 4 5 3
4.2  Design Objectives...  evaluation  1  26  2  The process, key performance and aspirations  1. Improve connectivity wit...
RT13041 27 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative “Design can be a genuine vehicle for change however it must be inclusive of all those around, even those happy with the status quo.”
RT13041  27 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative     Design can be a genuine vehicle for change however it must be in...
5.0 Ideas to serve as a catalyst 28 This is that starting point for the recognition of change. No one will expect what is likely to happen and it needs an effort of imagining. There needs to be a new identity created to incorporate the principle of beach and surf and the shift in how the place works but crucially how it FEELS. “Branding is about where real business currency is found, making opportunities, better arrangements, strengthening idea and achieving greater reward”. Ewan Searle, a branding company has responded to our involvement to create the following initiative. The main reference is the paving at Copacabana beach in Rio. This has suggested how the market can be persuaded to recognise the place. An initial sketchbook of illustrations has been considered for the ‘elevator’ description and the feel for the place and the offer. The following sketches will be developed to illustrate the programme of stages of the first phase of change. the concept
5.0  Ideas to serve as a catalyst  28  This is that starting point for the recognition of change. No one will expect what ...
RT13041 29 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  29 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
5.1 How might it work Initial THOUGHTS 30 reclaim the street In order to provoke discussion, debate and thoughts, Rock Townsend has undertaken a number of ‘What If’s’, small studies into what could happen to the different elements that make up Mawgan Porth. A series of studies that may form a masterplan but a masterplan that serves to provoke discussion not a vision that should necessarily be implemented. Principles: to facilitate a community centre to the village, where people go to shop, socialise and enjoy rather than the drive through to Newquay, Padstow or St Columb default mode for local facilities and the place to go to. The ‘abandoned’ culture that pervades the site currently exists as people can easily feel ‘lost’ and uncomfortable. It is the sense of being without ‘place’ that makes them more likely to travel through or move on quickly without engaging with what is or could be on offer in what is a great location. This initiative therefore puts the sense of place, the experience of Mawgan Porth at the heart of its aim, making local people and visitors alike want to be there and supporting this with a rich and varied array of initiatives and interventions that support local businesses, making life better, easier and more convenient, an asset for the local community. create a new surface applied to the road, pavements, forecourts and bridge to create a shared surface with pedestrians now the priority.
5.1  How might it work  Initial THOUGHTS  30  reclaim the street  In order to provoke discussion, debate and thoughts, Roc...
RT13041 31 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative INE ION L SECT LDING carriageway seating pavement shared surface platform BUILDING LINE AVENUE PLANTING LIGHTING COLUMN sand dune LINE INSTALLATION/PAVILION BUI MAIN terrace circulation
RT13041  31 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative  INE  ION L  SECT LDING  carriageway  seating  pavement  shared surf...
5.2 How might it work Initial thoughts 32 INHABIT THE s pa c e s How people move through and around the site, what they see and where they want to go is what makes the experience of Mawgan Porth. Whether it is parking in the car park to go to the beach, walking from the holiday village to the public house, whether you’re driving through, with the exception of the natural landscape, what you are confronted with is spaces and routes, buildings and boundaries that are incoherent, chaotic and detract from the beauty of the place. Using the analysis of the earlier chapters we have identified zones, spaces and elements of the place that don’t work as well as they could. They are not intuitive with what people want to do or how they want to behave. What serves one purpose can limit the enjoyment of other uses and possibilities and visa versa. Analysing how the spaces could perform as a whole led us to develop a set of components with which to populate the space to establish a structure to the initiatives: Props: these are new installations temporary or mobile that can be moved or altered easily that populate the place. Scenery: these are the fixed elements that are permanent or semi-permanent for the short to medium term; Installations: these are the items that animate the scenery/fixed elements and; introduce new shops, cafes and spaces where people want to come, gather, catch up, relax - the ‘centre’ of the village.
5.2  How might it work  Initial thoughts  32  INHABIT THE s pa c e s  How people move through and around the site, what th...
RT13041 33 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  33 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
6.0 The Design Initiatives 34 A LASTING i n t e rv e n t i o n It has become clear that it is how people move through the site and the ease in which people move between places is key to the experience. Establishing a hierarchy to the public realm, who uses it and how, is not just a safety issue but is also about being able to relax and enjoy the place. The draw of Mawgan Porth is its beach, the surf and natural scenery. What serves the beach and the village is the shops, café, public house, and other amenities. What divides them is the road that passes through. This divide is exacerbated by the no-mans land of tarmac which is neither road nor pavement, forecourt nor terrace. What is needed is a cohesive piece of design to establish a new approach to the beach that maintains the road yet unites these three elements. An intervention that both psychologically and physically narrows the gap, that can also become part of the identity to create the sense of place that it is currently lacking. introduce a coherent street scene, a backdrop for day-to-day life that is one that enhances the experience, is positive, inspiring, lasting...
6.0  The Design Initiatives  34  A LASTING i n t e rv e n t i o n  It has become clear that it is how people move through ...
RT13041 35 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  35 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
7.0 36 SKETCHBOOK
7.0 36  SKETCHBOOK
RT13041 37 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative The Stratergy The Filling Station, Kings Cross
RT13041  37 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative  The Stratergy  The Filling Station, Kings Cross
38 existing site The SURFACE RT13041 2 3 Mawgan Porth - The Big Idea services car park cafe shops new shared surface: new shared surface: new shared surface: transform the perception of the place create a reinvigorated identity a sense of place canopy enabling scheme to change the priority to pedestrians remove the conflict between pedestrian & the car access to the beach existing road the pavilions the decision: option 1 - silos RT13041 4 5 new pavilion #02 develop silo typology enhance existing buildings in response to land parcels/ownership create new landscape in between NEW pavilion #03 additional dynamic Mawgan Porth - The Big Idea new pavilion #01
38 existing site  The SURFACE RT13041  2 3 Mawgan Porth - The Big Idea  services  car park cafe shops new shared surface  ...
RT13041 the decision: option 2 - a coordinated joint development 39 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative 6 address the issues of the flood plain option 2 - develop the building RT13041 7 Mawgan Porth - The Big Idea develop new building to the rear of pavilions hotel? apartments?
RT13041  the decision  option 2 - a coordinated joint development  39 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative  6  addres...
8.0 Local Engagement 40 over the coming weeks and months we will be putting together ideas that are ours as well as interpretations of what people have suggested... ...what might be is just beyond the horizon. mymawganporth.com
8.0  Local Engagement  40  over the coming weeks and months we will be putting together ideas that are ours as well as int...
RT13041 41 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  41 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
9.0 42 YOUR COMMENTS
9.0 42  YOUR COMMENTS
RT13041 43 Mawgan Porth: The Mawgan Porth Initiative
RT13041  43 Mawgan Porth  The Mawgan Porth Initiative
Issue 05 // MARCH 2014 Unlocking the Potential RT13041 T | 020 7261 9577 E | studio@rocktownsend.co.uk W | www.rocktownsend.co.uk www.mymawganporth.com Old School, Exton Street, London. SE1 8UE The Mawgan Porth Initiative
Issue 05    MARCH 2014  Unlocking the Potential  RT13041  T   020 7261 9577  E   studio rocktownsend.co.uk  W   www.rockto...