Station Hill 2

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Urban myth
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Urban myth »

The Biscuit Tin where the next plans are being shown next week was being painted black. Maybe they are going to use it as a marketing suite
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by ash »

https://www.readingchronicle.co.uk/news ... -your-say/

A photo of the new plans on the Reading Chronicle website. It looks to be a much improved open public space, much larger and more open. I'm glad they decided to get rid of Garrard Street car park: it completely opens up the site, being sat right in the heart of this development.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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Looks good. No mention of how many stories?

I think it’s daft RBC want The Blade to remain our signature building. This site is primed for something more iconic.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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http://stationhill.co.uk/

The developers are hosting a public consultation today Friday 4pm to 8pm and tomorrow Saturday 10am to 1pm. I'll try and pop over tomorrow to see the plans and offer my feedback.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Tommy »

Let's hope nobody moves in to a town centre flat then complains about the noise from outside. (After Dark scenario)
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Re: Station Hill 2

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MrsKaur wrote: 14 Jun 2019 07:52 http://stationhill.co.uk/

The developers are hosting a public consultation today Friday 4pm to 8pm and tomorrow Saturday 10am to 1pm. I'll try and pop over tomorrow to see the plans and offer my feedback.
Pics would be great!
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by cnb »

OneGorman wrote: 14 Jun 2019 15:36 Pics would be great!
The display boards are downloadable here.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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The old BT build is gone.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Tommy »

Urban myth wrote: 03 Jun 2019 20:10 The Biscuit Tin where the next plans are being shown next week was being painted black. Maybe they are going to use it as a marketing suite
The Biscuit Tin was vandalised over the weekend.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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“Station Hill” latest/final (we hope) plans revealed, and it looks pretty decent tbf!

My only gripe is the heights are smaller than the Madejski plans, meaning the so called Blade remains the centre piece building which IMO is a joke. It’s several floors and a great white fin. Big whoop!

https://t.co/l8YxehZ8JT

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eddieed
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by eddieed »

What a massive improvement - especially with the flow into Friar Street - makes a great alternative to Station Road as the way into town. If only they could find a way then connect that to Broad Street without having to go through Smelly Alley I think it would open up the whole of the town centre. That is a big ask though!

I hope the finished article has the landscaping detail - it really makes the development in my opinion.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by chris_j_wood »

The bit I don't get is that the first image above seems to show that they are going to replace the recently created 'ampitheatre' at the western end of station square with a blank wall. I'm not sure if this is real, or a mistake or over-simplification in the artists impression. But if it is real, I cannot for the life of me see why they would do that.

My other concern, echoing one of eddieed's comments above, is that there is going to be this avenue through the development that the developers hope will become the natural route from the town centre to the station, but it doesn't actually go anywhere other than a rather uninteresting bit of Friar Street. Isn't it likely to become a rather empty and barren plaza, rather like that in the middle of the Chatham Street flats?.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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chris_j_wood wrote: 18 Jun 2019 11:40 The bit I don't get is that the first image above seems to show that they are going to replace the recently created 'ampitheatre' at the western end of station square with a blank wall. I'm not sure if this is real, or a mistake or over-simplification in the artists impression. But if it is real, I cannot for the life of me see why they would do that.
I think the people who did the visualisations were working from pretty old plans. They still show the old station footbridge and the Metal Box building.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Tommy »

Looks like plenty of room for a new Wetherspoons.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by joe_smooth »

Not sure those table tennis courts will be much use. It's bound to be windy between two tall buildings.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Tommy »

Yeah. LOL @ that. It's the windiest part of the town centre... I think they need to re-think that.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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Wonder what species of tree will be able to thrive at the shady bottom of a wind tunnel canyon between high rise buildings ?
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Pooneil »

OneGorman wrote: 17 Jun 2019 23:17 “Station Hill” latest/final (we hope) plans revealed, and it looks pretty decent tbf!

My only gripe is the heights are smaller than the Madejski plans, meaning the so called Blade remains the centre piece building which IMO is a joke. It’s several floors and a great white fin. Big whoop!
Good - I think that The Blade should be clearly visible to all as a warning not to repeat such a ruddy stupid design again - the town should own its mistakes, not try to hide them in the shadows. ;-)
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by ash »

Much improved from the Stanhope scheme. Great idea to reintroduce the plans for the underground parking. Makes so much more sense to use the space under the buildings for services, leaving the pedestrians with a plaza and open space above. Bonus is that it will provide level access from the station all the way through Friars Walk into Friar Street.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by OneGorman »

joe_smooth wrote: 18 Jun 2019 12:25 Not sure those table tennis courts will be much use. It's bound to be windy between two tall buildings.

But Badminton would be fun!!!
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by chris_j_wood »

Pooneil wrote: 18 Jun 2019 17:29
OneGorman wrote: 17 Jun 2019 23:17 My only gripe is the heights are smaller than the Madejski plans, meaning the so called Blade remains the centre piece building which IMO is a joke. It’s several floors and a great white fin. Big whoop!
Good - I think that The Blade should be clearly visible to all as a warning not to repeat such a ruddy stupid design again - the town should own its mistakes, not try to hide them in the shadows. ;-)
Why is everybody being nasty to the Blade all of a sudden. I like the way it stands out from afar as a signpost for the town. I like the look of it. And, on the one occasion I've been up to the top floor, I loved the view.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Tommy »

Is there a restaurant/bar in the Blade? Assuming there isn't. You would think that they would open one if the views are that good.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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cnb wrote: 18 Jun 2019 11:52
chris_j_wood wrote: 18 Jun 2019 11:40 The bit I don't get is that the first image above seems to show that they are going to replace the recently created 'ampitheatre' at the western end of station square with a blank wall. I'm not sure if this is real, or a mistake or over-simplification in the artists impression. But if it is real, I cannot for the life of me see why they would do that.
I think the people who did the visualisations were working from pretty old plans. They still show the old station footbridge and the Metal Box building.
Having taken a closer look at the plans, I unfortunately think that is not the case. As has been pointed out the architects have redesigned the plans of the development to have a raised podium at the level of Friar Street and Station Square. But Station Hill (the street) was redesigned a few years ago on the basis that the Station Hill development would have pedestrians at true ground level, so the former built up level of Station Hill was cut back to match.

The amphitheatre has to go because that space is needed for the level walkway between the station entrance and the avenue up the middle of the Station Hill development, bearing in mind that the new buildings come as far forward as where the biscuit tin now is, and the walkway has to be in front of that.

The result, unfortunately, is that Station Hill (the street) is now fated to be a blind, low level canyon between the development's podium on one side, the railway station on the other side, and a much narrower than at present set of stairs up to Station Square at the end. It will become just a rather larger than necessary access ramp and staircase down into the station subway, and a taxi rank that the taxi drivers will be even less inclined to use than at present. Just the situation that the original plans were trying to avoid.

Having realised that, I've revised my opinion of the redesign of the Station Hill development, and I now think it is a disaster. If I was the developer of the properties on the other side of the station, I'd be up in arms too, because it has put the idea of opening up that area to the town centre through the subway well and truly back in the box.
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Re: Station Hill 2

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chris_j_wood wrote: 01 Jul 2019 10:34
Pooneil wrote: 18 Jun 2019 17:29
OneGorman wrote: 17 Jun 2019 23:17 My only gripe is the heights are smaller than the Madejski plans, meaning the so called Blade remains the centre piece building which IMO is a joke. It’s several floors and a great white fin. Big whoop!
Good - I think that The Blade should be clearly visible to all as a warning not to repeat such a ruddy stupid design again - the town should own its mistakes, not try to hide them in the shadows. ;-)
Why is everybody being nasty to the Blade all of a sudden. I like the way it stands out from afar as a signpost for the town. I like the look of it. And, on the one occasion I've been up to the top floor, I loved the view.
I have been to the top floor, and I agree, the views are amazing. As are the glass lifts - shooting upwards and watching the Forbury Gardens as if zooming out on a telescope or camera. They had two sets of lifts - the glass ones for the brave, and ordinary enclosed ones for the terrified!! :-)
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Re: Station Hill 2

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chris_j_wood wrote: 01 Jul 2019 10:34
Pooneil wrote: 18 Jun 2019 17:29
OneGorman wrote: 17 Jun 2019 23:17 My only gripe is the heights are smaller than the Madejski plans, meaning the so called Blade remains the centre piece building which IMO is a joke. It’s several floors and a great white fin. Big whoop!
Good - I think that The Blade should be clearly visible to all as a warning not to repeat such a ruddy stupid design again - the town should own its mistakes, not try to hide them in the shadows. ;-)
Why is everybody being nasty to the Blade all of a sudden. I like the way it stands out from afar as a signpost for the town. I like the look of it. And, on the one occasion I've been up to the top floor, I loved the view.
I've never liked The Blade and I've never made any secret of it - it may stand out from afar, but only because of what I think looks like the architectural equivalent of a bl**dy stupid lady's hat at Royal Ascot *. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, though, so if you like the look of it, fair play.

I recently went to the top of the Thames Tower, and I'd have to say that the views from there were pretty spectacular too. It's often been said on here that to appreciate the beauty of Reading you need to look up, especially in the town centre where so much of the street-level frontage is tacky commercial pap from the last 40 or so years. And so by contrast, looking down from on high, Reading looks a lot more Victorian and Edwardian than you might imagine. Sure, you're not going to mistake if for Bath or Bakewell, but there's a lot more stuff standing from pre-war days than you might suspect if you only look at street level. I'll see if I can dig out some photos and stick them in the photo thread later.

* just to clarify - it's the hat that's bl**dy stupid, not the lady - although I might at least call her taste into question for wearing such a damn fool titfer ;-)
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Re: Station Hill 2

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Tommy wrote: 01 Jul 2019 10:37 Is there a restaurant/bar in the Blade? Assuming there isn't. You would think that they would open one if the views are that good.
Thing is the views are garbage from the blade. It’s not a tall building in the slightest. It’s just that poxy fin and pole that give it any form of height. Technically cheating it’s way to being the towns tallest building.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Tommy »

OneGorman wrote: 01 Jul 2019 22:26
Tommy wrote: 01 Jul 2019 10:37 Is there a restaurant/bar in the Blade? Assuming there isn't. You would think that they would open one if the views are that good.
Thing is the views are garbage from the blade. It’s not a tall building in the slightest. It’s just that poxy fin and pole that give it any form of height. Technically cheating it’s way to being the towns tallest building.
I've never been in. Chris said he loved the views. So I wondered why they hadn't put a bar/restaurant in akin to The Shard (I know it's nowhere near as good as the Shard but the Reading skyline is much lower).
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by eddieed »

chris_j_wood wrote: 18 Jun 2019 11:40 The bit I don't get is that the first image above seems to show that they are going to replace the recently created 'ampitheatre' at the western end of station square with a blank wall. I'm not sure if this is real, or a mistake or over-simplification in the artists impression. But if it is real, I cannot for the life of me see why they would do that.

My other concern, echoing one of eddieed's comments above, is that there is going to be this avenue through the development that the developers hope will become the natural route from the town centre to the station, but it doesn't actually go anywhere other than a rather uninteresting bit of Friar Street. Isn't it likely to become a rather empty and barren plaza, rather like that in the middle of the Chatham Street flats?.
The images seem to be a very hybrid mix - especially the "Hand Drawn" plan as it appears to have both the new station overbridge and the old station footbridge. Plus some building where Trooper Potts Way now is, but also the proposed development on the Royal Mail site drawn! Very strange.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by cnb »

Tommy wrote: 02 Jul 2019 08:18So I wondered why they hadn't put a bar/restaurant in akin to The Shard
Because putting a publicly accessible restaurant on the top floor of an otherwise private building is really expensive, and the view in Reading isn't worth the premium that would be required to fund it. For a start you need to have a separate entrance lobby with separate lifts. Different density of people and different fire regulations for public areas may mean an extra staircase. Those changes don't just cost money to put in, they reduce the floor space on all the lower floors.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by ReadingBiker »

eddieed wrote: 18 Jun 2019 11:25 What a massive improvement - especially with the flow into Friar Street - makes a great alternative to Station Road as the way into town. If only they could find a way then connect that to Broad Street without having to go through Smelly Alley I think it would open up the whole of the town centre. That is a big ask though!

I hope the finished article has the landscaping detail - it really makes the development in my opinion.
Looking at it more - it would require a complete redesign but a diagonal thoroughfare going from the station to the far SW corner of the development by sainsbury's would allow a better flow towards West Street which would in many ways be more useful than a route to central Broad St paralleling the existing Queen Vic St and Smelly Alley and hopefully raise the profile of that end of the town centre
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by ash »

Phase 1 (south of Garrard Street) has just been approved by the Reading Borough Council planning committee.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by OneGorman »

Fantastic news. Thought it would without any difficulties. The rest also looks fantastic. Transforms the towns little image.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by Tommy »

Worrying times with being a huge car park down.
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by dave m »

I can hardly sleep a wink
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Re: Station Hill 2

Post by mikejee »

Tommy
All the more opportunities to use the buses
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