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Lea River Park implementation begins with Latz + Partner appointment


The multiple award-winning landscape architects Latz + Partner have been appointed to lead a team to design a section of the Lea River Park. This is a major regeneration project to create a new continuous area of parkland and parks stretching from the River Thames through to the Olympic Park and beyond to the existing parkland to the north.

Their designs will start the process of turning the vision for the Lea River Park into a reality. The Lea River Park Design Framework’s vision - drawn up by a team led by 5th Studio Architects - is for six new parks in the Lower Lea Valley, linked by continuous linear parkland called the Fatwalk.

Latz + Partner were appointed by the London Thames Gateway Development Corporation with its partners the London Development Agency’s Design for London, the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority and the London Boroughs of Tower Hamlets and Newham through a competitive European Union procurement process.

The River Lea rises west of Luton and runs 68km through East London including the Olympic Park and finishing at the River Thames east of Canary Wharf. While the northern section is bustling with activity from park goers, cyclists, strollers, bird watchers and horse riders, the Lower Lea section is currently disjointed and underused.

The section covered by Latz + Partner’s design has three parts:

* The first part of the Fatwalk - this will create a new riverside cycling and walking parkland route.
* Three Mills Green - a new community park.
* East India Dock Basin - a park and visitor destination linked to the Thames.

The new parkland will achieve Sir Patrick Abercrombies’ vision for the Lower Lea Valley. He stated in 1944 that,

’The valley gives the opportunity for a great piece of regenerative planning...every piece of land welded into a great regional reservation.’

London Development Agency Group Director for Design Development and Environment Peter Bishop said:

“This project presents an opportunity to create an exciting new park which draws on the Lower Lea Valley’s industrial landscape and heritage. It is a bold step towards a cohesive regeneration strategy for this part of London and will be a critical step to delivering a lasting Olympic Legacy.”

Chief Executive of the London Thames Gateway Development Corporation Peter Andrews said:

“Latz + Partners appointment brings us closer to the development of an exciting new addition to London’s parkland and fills a gnawing gap in the provisions of high quality open space in east London. With the full support and active participation of our partners London can look forward to a strikingly original landscape that celebrates the history, heritage and natural attributes of the Lea Valley while acting as a vital spur to regeneration.”

Lee Valley Regional Park Authority Chief Executive Shaun Dawson said:

“It’s been our aspiration for many years to extend the Lee Valley Regional Park southwards to the Thames. We’re delighted to be able to play our part in bringing this partnership to fruition.”


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