Regal London set to transform Orchard Wharf into mixed-use development

Much-needed purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) to be developed at the Orchard Wharf redevelopment by Regal London.

Concept image of the Orchard Wharf redevelopment in London, which will contain PBSA beds | Regal London | PBSA News
Concept image of the Orchard Wharf redevelopment in London, which will contain PBSA beds.

Developer Regal London has unveiled plans for the transformation of Orchard Wharf, a strategically positioned mixed-use development on the North bank of the River Thames. The new sustainable, vibrant and mixed community will feature new affordable homes, PBSA, and an urban freight logistics port catering to London’s last-mile distribution needs.

Making the most of an unused site since 1993, the new plans – designed by architects Howells – includes approximately 217 new affordable homes, 35% of the total. This goes a significant way towards Mayor Lutfur Rahman’s Manifesto pledge of 4,000 social homes through the provision of family sized apartments with private amenity, communal podium terraces, sheltered doorstep play-space and panoramic views.

In addition, there will be around 1,365 PBSA beds at Orchard Wharf that are set to address the high demand for student housing in London, contributing significantly to the London Plan’s yearly requirement for student bed spaces.

Both tenures will be located atop the Wharf Box, sharing a space with the communal facilities. Regal London is also investing in enhancements to the public realm, including small retail and a Visitor Centre.

“The site has been unloved for over two decades, and we have a fantastic opportunity to bring it to back to life. Our vision for Orchard Wharf brings together a significant quantum of affordable housing, PBSA and an active river frontage. This will not only open-up this corner of the riverbank, but will help alleviate pressure on larger homes currently occupied by students and help meet the borough’s housing need.”

Steve Harrington, Planning Director, Regal London

Recognising the growing demand for waterborne freight and in collaboration with the Port of London Authority (PLA), the safeguarded wharf is set to be retained, marking a significant milestone in the efforts to revitalise this prime location situated within the Leamouth Cluster, identified by the London Borough of Tower Hamlets (LBTH) as a tall building zone.

The scheme is designed to protect residents in terms of noise and air quality, with an enclosed Wharf Box ensuring that the activity remains separate from the local domain. Regal London’s plans are set for submission to LBTH in spring 2024.