1.1 Executive Summary
This is a regeneration framework for The Victoria Embankment created on behalf of Professor Mathew Carmona and tutors at the Bartlett School of Planning. In their work, CONNECT4 used the combined expertise of two architects, a geographer and a journalist. The masterplan and the principles behind it are inspired by the people of the area and the best principles of Urban Design, and in particular Kevin Lynch and Gordon Cullen. The ideas have been consulted within the community.
The Victoria Embankment is a key riverside location in central London served by good transport links (four tube stops, two rail links) and within walking distance of major attractions such as Westminister, Big Ben, Trafalgar Square, Convent Garden, The Strand and the Southbank. Despite such strengths, it is an unloved and little used part of London.
5.1 Vision Statement
Our vision is to release life back into the area by re-establishing old links and creating new ones. But encouraging people to come to the area is not enough. To make the Victoria Embankment function as a place for people, we must provide them with activities once they are there. Although Somerset House and the close links to the National Gallery on Trafalgar Square complement the cultural offerings of the Southbank, we have greater ambitions for the area than to make it merely an extension of this zone. The area needs to establish its own unique identity by building on its existing qualities.
CONNECT4 envisage dropping the old-fashioned Victoria from the commonly referenced title (although it could remain the name of the road) and rebrand the area The Embankment. This symbolizes rebirth and also underlines the modern attractions we are proposing, as well as providing a shortened reference that is as easy to name as the Southbank.
The Embankment is like an umbilical cord linking east to west and north to south. By improving connections and creating a new identity around the Embankment Esplanade, CONNECT4’s proposals will bring new life to both the area and the whole of London. Traffic calming measure will let the city breathe. The new 24/7 identity of The Embankment will harness the energy of the theatre district and Soho, with the Sphere nightclub a showcase for a young and dynamic city.