Watermill Lane 

This mixed-tenure residential scheme creates 81 homes for affordable rent and shared ownership - 17 houses with private gardens and 64 flats with access to two shared courtyards.

Client  Newlon Housing Trust
Location  Enfield, London
Completion  2015
Cost  £13.8m


  • RIBA stages 1-6
  • Architectural design
  • Public consultation
  • Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4

The building steps from three to nine storeys with homes arranged around two landscaped courtyards. The building height rises to create a tower in the north-east corner of the site, providing acoustic separation and shelter from the busy North Circular Road passing outside. Green roofs and landscaped courtyards offset the inner urban location.

A Noise Impact Assessment was undertaken which indicated that the site fell within ‘NEC Category D’ where planning permission would normally be refused. The design therefore had to incorporate noise mitigation measures which included high performance double glazed windows to the North Circular and Bull Lane facades.

As opening windows would also be an issue for residents, all homes with windows onto these facades also had constant mechanical ventilation via MVHR units installed. This ensured residents would not be bothered by traffic noise and, more importantly, be subjected to the poor quality air from the busy roads.

Photography Jack Hobhouse