Image and design: URBED

Oakfield Terrace - Build your own High Street

01/21 - 04/22

The Oakfield Terrace is Homebaked CLT's current main focus. We are transforming the terrace adjacent to the bakery building into an innovative and highly energy efficient mixed-use high street scheme owned by the community.

Link to the full scheme is here.

The site

Attached to our neighbourhood bakery (197-199 Oakfield Rd) which is located in a prominent position at the head of the High Street and within sight of the LFC 'Kop' are nine unoccupied Edwardian Terraces (179 -195 Oakfield Rd). The whole block was built at the turn of the 20th century with the bakery building completed last in 1903.

The terrace was emptied under the pathfinder scheme and earmarked for demolition. The last property was transferred to Liverpool City Council's ownership in 2018.

Homebaked CLT has since it's inception had plans to regenerate the entire block, which we call 'Oakfield Terrace'. Communications with Liverpool City Council about the development of the terrace have been had since 2013.

Development process

After having finalised the first phase of the bakery building refurbishment in 2015, we started on co-creating a scheme for Oakfield Terrace, a process which we named 'Build Your Own High Street'. We initially designed a new-built scheme based on the information that demolition was inevitable. The scheme, created with Architectural Emporium, was included in the 2016 Anfield master plans, however being located in a former pathfinder demolition zone severely slowed down any attempts at development.

In 2018 after completion of the bakery building the CLT was given the green light by LCC to explore whether the adjacent properties could be refurbished and re-purposed instead: As this had always been our preferred option, we took the opportunity immediately and engaged retrofit specialist Marianne Heaslip from URBED architects - who had already worked with us 2up2down. This final planning and design process resulted in a highly innovative mixed use scheme which received planning approval in 2019.

Photo: Ronnie Hughes
Participatory design and planning

Homebaked CLT has developed a particular participatory planning approach. We set up a diverse group of approximately 20 community members as the 'Core Design Group': invitation to this group was both public and on invitation, and the group worked closely with the architects and other experts to co-create the scheme. The planning and design work happens in a series of workshops which also have educational elements so every participant can comfortably make design suggestions and make informed decisions. We share information on projected budgets available and any other external factors, so the group can negotiate and prioritise. All key decisions were made in the Core Design Group and then presented for feedback to the CLT board and to the wider public in a consultation process. In addition, further consultations were held with future users Homebaked Bakery and Homegrown Collective.

In the planning and development process for this scheme, the CLT has over the last years held 16 planning workshops and engaged with around 900 people through public events, drop-ins and surveys. You can read more about the process on our blog.

Photo: Britt Jurgensen
The scheme

The nine terraces will be made into eight homes, some of them traditional 3 beds, differently sized two beds and a one bed apartment. They all have some sort of private outdoor space, be it on the ground or as a terrace. We will extend into the attic space, allowing for room sizes to be bigger than average with some extra storage and utility rooms. Importantly the terraces will be retrofitted to a high environmental standard which means energy bills for the future occupants will be kept very low. One of the flats is fully accessible and also has space for a live-in carer.

We are keeping the frontage traditional in line with the heritage of our area and a clever solution to provide level access to all homes and shop space; the back is more modern and thanks to our amazing local design team each home has a little winter garden built in between the outriggers. All homes will be available at affordable rent.

Image and Design: URBED

And last, but absolutely not least, we are providing some more space for local business. Homebaked Bakery is extending into the downstairs of the neighbouring terrace to provide more training space and more spaces to sit and meet. At the other end of the terrace from the bakery building, our sister organisation and community business Homegrown are creating a space for brewing beer and non-alcoholic drinks - and, most importantly, for more local jobs, training and get-togethers.

The Oakfield Terrace scheme aims to act as a catalyst for the regeneration of Oakfield Road and the CLT envisage this project as part of a continuing process, exploring ways of reconfiguring and refurbishing buildings in the area to provide more community-owned and stewarded places to live, work and play!