Design and heritage

What we do

We promote good urban design practice in London. We're helping to implement the Mayor's Good Growth by Design programme through our activities.

Our team of architects, urban designers and heritage experts provide in-house specialist services to us, the Greater London Authority (GLA) and London boroughs.

Our responsibilities

  • Support the delivery of world-class streets and spaces, providing design and heritage advice for projects such as the Bakerloo line extension and Old Street roundabout
  • Advise on public space schemes by consultants, boroughs or developers and advise on how they can be improved
  • Design public space schemes, focusing on the needs of those who will use and look after places and spaces
  • Provide urban design services to major transport infrastructure projects
  • Help create planning frameworks and area strategies using high quality documents that tackle complex design issues, approaches, principles, requirements and parameters for future work
  • Assess planning applications and emerging policy documents, considering the design and heritage credentials of streets and interchanges
  • Provide historic conservation advice and input
  • Support our pre-application services and development planning function
  • Design guidance, case studies and research
  • Support the GLA's Good Growth by Design programme

We also work with Urban Design London. They provide training, network events and design review services.

Case studies

Brixton Hill pocket park

As part of the Bus Priority Programme we designed and delivered a scheme for an overlooked space on Brixton Hill, transforming it into a pocket park for the local community, an oasis for social exchange.

With one new tree and six new plant species, the space helps to increase local biodiversity. It also includes seating and cycle parking, which supports active travel and access to local shops and services.

highbury corner cgi

Highbury Corner public area

As integrated members of TfL's design team, we designed and delivered a major new public space on the western side of the remodelled Highbury Corner. The scheme integrates the arboretum, which was previously in the centre of the traffic gyratory, with the new public space.

Royal Docks Local Transport Design Guidance

We've been working with the GLA and London Borough of Newham to produce the Royal Docks Local Transport Design Guidance. This outlines our shared goal to create significant improvements to both the movement and place function of streets and spaces in the Royal Docks Opportunity Area.

Nine Elms on the South Bank - Public Realm Design Guide, Materials Palette and Cycling Strategy

See guidance for all parts of public space and surfacing materials in the 195-hectare Opportunity Area:

Small Change, Big Impact

Small Change, Big Impact is a practical guide to producing temporary, light touch and low-cost projects to change the way a street looks and feels. It forms part of our Healthy Streets Approach.