Development and regeneration in Barking and Dagenham

Academy Central is making the grade

Wed 13 February 2013, 7:30 pm

Developer Taylor Wimpey's regeneration of the University of East Londonís former Barking campus now has some 340 homes occupied and is taking shape as a sustainable new community.

Academy Central has a new on-site primary school, and work is underway on the next 300 homes for the scheme, which is expected to ultimately boast more than 900 properties.

The development, off Longbridge Road, includes a mixture of private houses and apartments and affordable homes provided by London & Quadrant Housing.

Taylor Wimpey East London projects director Alun Thomas said the scheme was on course for completion in spring 2016, but that visitors and residents could already get a clear feel for the finished development by viewing progress so far.

"One of the most important milestones for the whole community has been the opening of Manor Longbridge School, and if you stand in Mayesbrook Park, you can see we’re now only two blocks away from completing the park elevation, which has made a really positive difference to the visual impact of the site," he said.

“We’ve also started creating a pedestrian avenue, which is formed by two blocks of approximately 94 homes each running up from the park to the old campus building.

"This link will become a green route through the development which is a key feature in the overall scheme.

"It’s really gratifying to see a meaningful proportion of the masterplan now built.”

The scheme's Exeter House apartment building now boasts a stunning feature wall which has been designed to complement the overall philosophy of Academy Central.

Two sides of the building are clad with chequered green and white squares of Trespa panelling, reflecting how green open spaces contribute to the well-being and comfort of the development’s residents.

As well as building high-quality homes at Academy Central, Taylor Wimpey has been investing in the local community.

One example was a disused garage site in Becontree, where Academy Central contractors removed concrete slabs free of charge so that local people could create a community garden.

Taylor Wimpey has also organised school visits to Academy Central and work placements for those interested in careers in the housebuilding industry.

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