Harlow Quarter

Masterplan for a new garden town
Harlow Quarter aims to create a place where people want to live, work, socialise and relax, putting the community at the heart of its proposals and inspired by Gibberd's legacy of a garden town.

The legacy of Gibberd’s visionary thinking for Harlow was defined in its Garden Town concept to create interconnected green spaces and wedges that linked the surrounding residential communities with the town centre. The town centre itself was further animated with the addition of word-class public art and sculpture for all to enjoy.

The landscape and public realm proposals seek to revitalise this vision to create a verdant addition to the town centre with human scale street gardens, rich in detail to afford a playful and engaging public realm, that integrates the existing art trail, with streetscape gardens, amenity spaces and external F&B opportunities to improve the evening economy and create a vibrant new quarter in the town centre.

The placemaking vision sets out a series of character areas, informed by the adjacent building use and active edges, to create a new vibrant community and local economy to act as a catalyst for wider improvements to the town centre.

A series of new urban squares will provide legibility and act as a point of orientation to Harlow Quarter. A new green spine and central Garden Boulevard with groupings of trees and planting will create a verdant character and frame garden ‘rooms’ set back from the central thoroughfare.

The garden rooms and café terraces will encourage people to linger in the afternoon and early evening sun, and playful features will provide intrigue and interest for children to explore, observed by their carers seated at one of the external café terraces or on benches.

The articulation of the planting will create places for seats and incidental social interaction where the new residential community can forge links and connections.

Access to the building entrances will be emphasised by generous thresholds with distinctive porcelain tiling to reference the modernist heritage of Harlow. Repetition of the detailing will thread through the Garden Boulevard to create an attractive and memorable identity, enhanced by bold colours and fragrance in the planting.

The paving finishes will continue through the building to ensure seamless connections between the external and internal space, visually connecting the interior spaces with the wider public realm.

The Courtyard Gardens will provide a green haven for all residents with a cycle of different possible uses during the day and over the seasons, and create a verdant outlook from living space year-round. The additional rooftop terraces will give residents a valuable private amenity resource.

International Property Awards 2020

Winner 'Mixed Use Development for the UK region'


Harlow Quarter, Essex


Strawberry Star


2 Hectares


Landscape and Public Realm Design
Planning Approval, Concept to Developed Design, Design Code


International Property Awards 2020 - Winner 'Mixed Use Development for the UK region'


Architect: Flanagan Lawrence
Structural & Civil Engineers: PTA
Project Manager: Gardiner & Theobald
Sustainability Consultant: Hoare Lea
Planning Consultant: Turley
Transport Consultant: Caneparo
Townscape & Heritage: City Designer
Ecology Consultant: Eight Associates
Daylight & Sunlight: GIA

CGI Credits:

Strawberry Star / Flanagan Lawrence