Marine Employment Quarter, Southampton

Following an initial grant of outline permission for circa 21,000sqm floorspace as part of the wider Centenary Quay (former Vosper Thorneycroft site) redevelopment on the eastern bank of the River Itchen in 2009, we were instructed by Oceanic Estates to help deliver the employment zone.

The Brief

Unpicking and reestablishing the baseline traffic position as a standalone entity from the wider residential land, Paul Basham Associates were initially tasked with helping secure a revised outline application for a more considered and deliverable application.

Our Approach

One proposal for the site, for which Paul Basham Associates provided a Transport Assessment and vehicle tracking, was for 24hr operation for the testing and manufacturing of wind turbine blades (circa 11,600sqm GFA), with blades arriving and departing primarily via the water. Working with GE Renewables, this proposal received planning permission in 2017, but did not progress.

A separate application was made for circa 3,000 of B2 use with ancillary office/R&D space on part of the site, which we supported through a Transport Statement and parking review and also received permission in 2017.

This unit was built out by Oceanic Estates and subsequently taken on by Ocean Infinity, an innovative maritime robotics company. Paul Basham Associates worked with Ocean Infinity and architects Boyle and Summers to adapt the building and surrounding hardstanding to meet their specific needs, including meeting their end user access and parking needs and improved office floorspace for their vessel control room.

The Result

Ocean Infinity have occupied this impressive building adjacent to the River Itchen, with further parcels of the wider Maritime Employment Quarter still under review for the long term delivery of high quality employment space that makes the most of this coastline location.