Axwell Park Courtyard, a secluded development set in a landscape of woodlands. Visiting the scheme, it genuinely feels like the countryside. In this post, I will be analysing the development in relation to the Building for Life 12 criteria; designed to help structure discussions on new residential developments to help identify what issues matter to local communities and how development proposals can respond positively .
Integrating into the Neighbourhood
- Site is secluded, may be difficult to create new connections.
- Site benefits from bus stop at the edge of the boundary, A694.
- Fits in with surrounding traditional terraced housing and style.
2. Facilities and Service
- Close drive to local landmarks and amenities, however less within walking distance.
- Residents are entitled to take advantage of historic Park.
3. Public Transport
- Bus stops Red Kite (45, 47, X45, X46, X47), 890, 899, S893.
- Access to amenities and Newcastle city centre.
4. Meeting local housing requirements
- 6 property styles of townhouses and apartments (27 units).
- Prices start from £179,950, accommodating younger and older residents .
Creating a place
- Change in façade – outer vs inner courtyard.
- Palladian architectural authenticity alongside a new modern style, creates a distinctive identity .
- Arrangement of townhouses and apartments encourages a sense of community centred at the courtyard.
6. Working with the site and its context
- Views created within the courtyard.
- Potential to create views towards the park.
- Site works alongside existing Palladian style. 
- Axwell Hall can be further developed into a community hub in the future.
7. Creating well-defined streets and spaces
- Streets and spaces are well defined, with no sharp turns.
- Road is wide and mixed-use friendly within the courtyard.
- Open park space well defined for private residential use.
8. Easy to find your way around
- Clear route into the estate defined by woodland.
- No visual impairments around the site.
- Built form creates a well navigable estate.
Street & Home
9. Streets for All
- 10mph sign on roads.
- Courtyard and surrounding landscape creates social spaces.
10. Car Parking
- Sufficient visitor car parking available around Axwell Hall.
- One allocated private parking space for residents in the courtyard.
11. Public and Private spaces
- Courtyard emboldens social interaction.
- 35-acre open park landscape encouraging play.
- Spaces are well managed and attractive.
12. External Storage and Amenity Space
- Communal bin storage
- Cycle storage within the courtyard.
- Plentiful landscape for residents to interact and play.
Overall, the scheme scored 8 greens and 4 ambers. The scheme respects the surrounding area and history, creating a well-off countryside like estate, enhancing social interaction whilst being nearby the city centre. Overall, this is a well-designed housing development with various positive aspects!
 Axwell Park. (n.d.). Life in the Park. [online] Available at: http://www.axwellpark.co.uk/the-development Accessed 22/02/2020.
 Building For Life. (2020). About built for life. [online] Available at: http://www.builtforlifehomes.org/go/about. Accessed on: 23/02/20.
 Henderson, T. (2016). Axwell Hall in Derwent Valley to be converted into 20 homes as it gets new lease of life at last. Chronicle Live. [online] Available at: https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/property-news/axwell-hall-derwent-valley-converted-10788372 Accessed 23/02/2020.
 Mellor Architects. (2019). Axwell Estate. [online] Available at: https://www.mellorarchitects.com/axwell-estate Accessed 23/02/2020.