Bath Road former filling station

Bath Road, Totterdown: Update

The former Esso garage.

The Bath Road runs horizontally across the image. The grey block at the left is the approach to Totterdown Bridge. The proposal is to build 152 new dwellings in four buildings comprising a 15-storey tower, two central blocks of 6 and 7-storeys and a 3-storey eastern block. There is ground and lower ground floor commercial space. This will be a difficulty site to develop. There is an elevated concrete platform of the former filling state to demolish; construction includes piles in the uncertain geology above the riverbank.

The Society welcomes the regeneration of this site which is a long-standing negative feature in the Bath Road. Apart from the Tower, the Society supports the development’s design; the landscaping is imaginative. The central and eastern blocks demonstrate the potential for densification. At 65 metres, the Tower would break the skyline of the escarpment. The view of the Totterdown escarpment is a valuable landscape asset. The Tower would dominate local views from the Bath Road, which is domestically scaled. The Tower does not follow recent planning advice. The Tower would introduce large scale development close to the development site on the other side of Totterdown Bridge. The proposed Tower is indistinguishable from many other residential blocks. The ‘shoulder’ feature attempts to create a slimmer tower but the external balconies have the opposite effect. Only the Tower’s height would make it a ‘memorable landmark’, one that is not locally welcome. A lower-rise development in place of the Tower would still add substantially to the city’s housing stock.

John Frenkel

Bristol Civic Society full response. Comments made by BCS on July 2017.


2 thoughts on “Bath Road, Totterdown: Update”

  1. Agree totally with points made here. As well as concerns in the aftermath of Grenfell Tower, surely we have learned the lessons from the 60s of the desirability of high rise buildings.
    Don’t spoil the skyline: mine and my neighbours’ has just been ruined along with the loss of numerous trees – neither the developers or the council seemd to care at all about the impact on residents or the environment.

  2. Helena (Totterdown resident)

    The tower is in construction, it’s very clear already that the design is aesthetically out of keeping and will be a very unwelcome addition to the landscape. The works are very noisy and causing a nuisance to residents who work from home. I am shocked that the planners went ahead despite the community’s objections and the obvious environmental hazards. This going ahead gives a very dangerous precedent and will now irrevocably ruin Totterdown’s character. I can only hope the structure will be destroyed in the future when planners have come to their senses…(with further environmental cost to the area) and more importantly, I hope this travesty won’t be repeated as it’s already muted for the plot next to the Thunderbolt. Intelligent planners with environmental credentials would repurpose old buildings, not construct hideous towers in historic residential areas.

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