Visions, Strategies & Masterplans
Projects by service
BOND STREET PUBLIC REALM ENHANCEMENTS
An ambitious design to revitalise an iconic shopping street
Bond Street Public Realm Survey, 2015Bond Street Concept Design and Ongoing Design Oversight, 2015
Westminster City Council (WCC), New West End Company
FM Conway-WSP (Bond Street Concept Design), WSP Traffic Engineers (detailed design and delivery)
City of Westminster, London
Understanding the context, anticipating the future
Bond Street is synonymous with British fashion, style and luxury. But in recent years, the quality of the outdoor environment along Bond Street had fallen out of step with the calibre of its buildings, retailers and international reputation. The arrival of the Elizabeth line Crossrail in 2019 will significantly increase the number of pedestrians moving through Bond Street and the West End.
Publica was commissioned by Westminster City Council (WCC) to design the street and, following a nine-month survey, we set a vision for the street and developed the unified concept design that was delivered and completed in October 2018. Publica maintained the role of design guardian throughout the project, ensuring that the concept design translated into a public realm of the highest standard. We worked alongside traffic and transport specialists NRP and with FM Conway-WSP for WCC, in partnership with the New West End Company (NWEC) and Transport for London (TfL).
The project to transform Bond Street broke ground in April 2017 in a special event with representatives from the GLA, WCC, NWEC, the Bond Street Management Group and local business and neighbours. It was officially launched in October 2018 by Westminster Leader Nickie Aiken, Deputy Mayor for Planning, Regeneration, and Skills Jules Pipe, and hosted by NWEC Chairman Sir Peter Rogers and Chief Executive Jace Tyrrell.
Concept design, through to construction
Publica’s concept design for Bond Street was developed following our detailed audit and analysis of both the street and the wider neighbourhood. Existing street uses, routes, character, connections, material, architectural and spatial conditions and display windows, lighting and public art were carefully considered while anticipating the impact of new patterns of movement across the district.
In our initial concept design, we identified the town square as the ideal location for public art. Publica negotiated the re-location of the Horse and Rider sculpture by Elisabeth Frink, previously positioned at the corner of Piccadilly and Dover Street, to the corner of Bond Street and Burlington Gardens. We designed the sculpture’s setting and, in collaboration with Ben Jones and Annet Stirling of Incisive Letterwork, developed the design of the plinth and its carved lettering work. Publica also oversaw the process of designed the plaque that provides additional information about the artwork. The sculpture’s re-location was unveiled as part of Mayfair Art Weekend in June 2018.
The scheme is built from a carefully selected high quality material palette – York Stone, Portuguese silver granite and green and black stone paving – along with streamlined road signs and markings to create an improved streetscape. The design flexibly responds to the different functions and character areas along the street while balancing the needs of pedestrians, cyclists, cars, taxis and service vehicles. Wider footways and new crossings have been created to improve the visitor experience in anticipation of the increased footfall following the opening of the Elizabeth line. New street furniture, public seating, greenery and lighting accompany new public spaces and improved settings for public art. New timber and bronze benches have been designed by Publica and are now installed on Bond Street.
The design matches Bond Street’s public realm to its international reputation and builds a unique identity for Bond Street that is also integrated with Mayfair, the West End and Westminster as a whole.