Low Line Commons scoops New London Awards

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Supported by the Mayor of London, the New London Awards celebrate all scales of projects that ‘contribute to the creation of a more sustainable, civilised and egalitarian London’. Of the Low Line Commons, Peter Murray, NLA Curator-in-Chief and Chair of the Judging Panel, said, “The NLA’s mission is to help create a better city. What is better than taking…left-over pieces of urban fabric and stitching them together into spaces that can used by local communities, as well as providing linked-up walking routes that support active travel strategies?”

Commissioned by the Low Line Partners - Better Bankside, Team London Bridge, Blue Bermondsey, Southwark Council and The Arch Company – the Low Line Commons will increase environmental resilience by promoting innovative greening and sustainability initiatives that mitigate climate change, while celebrating the diversity and heritage of each neighbourhood it passes through.

The Low Line Commons was conceived by PDP London architects, working with Macfarlane and Associates Landscape Architects, Greengage sustainability consultants and Studio 4215 environment consultants. It was commissioned in 2019 through an international design competition to develop a green vision for the Low Line funded by Lund Trust, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin. Nature is fundamental to the project; it will incorporate a variety of ecological interventions, helping to improve local air quality and create a healthier environment. The project features increased green infrastructure – tree planting, community gardens and wildlife habitats – to help create a ‘sense of place’ for the community and encourage more people to visit the Low Line.

The project will be delivered incrementally over time and will deliver:

  • 50,000 sqm biodiverse roofs
  • 500 new trees
  • 30 sustainable drainage systems/rain gardens
  • 10,000 plants
  • 100 new wildlife habitats
  • 1,000 sqm wildflower meadows
  • 500 sqm ‘grey to green’ de-paving projects
  • 30 pocket spaces supporting social interaction
  • 3.5 km carriageway transformed to support green business and active travel
  • Pocket parks, productive private green spaces, sensory play areas, pedestrian priority, lighting, canopies, seating, and pop-up uses.

The Low Line partners are currently submitting a bid to the Greater London Authority’s Green and Resilient Spaces Fund to secure funding for four exemplar projects that bring Low Line Commons to life. The proposal, ‘Seeding Low Line Commons’, has been shortlisted from 53 expressions of interest to submit a full bid to the fund, the outcome of which will be revealed in spring 2022. Find out more and support our bid.